The Austin Chronicle

A Drunken Poet's Dream

Poet leaves time and space

Reviewed by Jessi Cape, December 11, 2015, Music

Patti Smith – National Book Award-winner, Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, acclaimed visual artist – offers a peephole into her private world with M Train. Stream of consciousness metered by her poet's rhythm, stories upon stories thread seamlessly through time, space, and tangential memories. She sleeps in Diego Rivera's bed, conducts inner dialogs with Jiminy Cricket and Nicola Tesla, rides out Hurricane Sandy, observes a dying bee and her gilded socks, and relates how Haruki Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle led her to the (dilapidated) beachfront house of her dreams. Chock-full of literary loops and detective show references (The Killing), and peppered with Smith's Polaroids, M Train begs to be dog-eared, footnoted, and shared.

M Train

by Patti Smith
Knopf, 272 pp., $25

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