Published in 1994, Crystallography was a gem of a book, an instant hit that was nominated for the Gerald Lampert Award. It has been unavailable for an ice age, and Coach House Books is proud to bring it back.
‘Crystallography’ means the study of crystals, but also, taken literally, ‘lucid writing.’ The book exists in the intersection of poetry and science, exploring the relationship between language and crystals — looking at language as a crystal, a space in which the chaos of individual parts align to expose a perfect formation of structure. As Bök himself says, ‘a word is a bit of crystal in formation,’ suggesting there is a space in which words, like crystals, can resonate pure form.
Lucid, sparkling, a diamond of a book: Crystallography is a crystal-clear approach to the science of poetry from the author of Eunoia.
Christian Bök is the author of Crystallography (Coach House Press, 1994), a ’pataphysical encyclopedia nominated for the Gerald Lampert Award for Best Poetic Debut, and ’Pataphysics: The Poetics of an Imaginary Science (Northwestern University Press, 2001). His book Eunoia won the 2002 Griffin Poetry Prize and is the best-selling Canadian poetry book of all time. Bök has created artificial languages forGene Roddenberry’s Earth: Final Conflict and Peter Benchley’s Amazon. His conceptual artwork has appeared at the Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York City as part of the exhibit Poetry Plastique. He currently teaches at the University of Calgary.