Alessandro Brusa, In tagli ripidi (nel corpo che abitiamo in punta), Giulio Perrone editore, 2017
In his new book, published almost four years after the first poetry collection La raccolata del sale, Alessandro Brusa continues his research through words, exploring his own existence as a human being on a universal level and the variety of the human relationships, the equilibrium and the contrasts that reside in it. This research involves a physical journey, because it is focused on the body, and a metaphysical one, since it tries to overcome the tangible individual experience, stripping it from all the occurring events in order to obtain its essence.
The research is framed by a rough geography (given by some recurring terms, such as earth, water, sea, wind, time and space), which constitutes important exterior and interior reference points. The inner self-body relationship itself is essential too, constantly in a precarious balance (meaning, on the edge, as we read in the subheading and several times in the book), torn between the desire to find a defined shape, an identity, and the constant invitation to scatter around. The body is evoked through its anatomical traits, that, however, differ from the geographical definitions because are deprived of any symbolic value (shoulder, head, tongue, chest, hands, nose, etc.). Our investigation is guided by the Muse, or Nemesis, as Marco Simonelli calls her in the afterword, meaning the “rough emotion”, the unintelligible and redemptive strength, the essence that needs to be expressed through a different and unusual language. This new language is conquered by Alessandro thanks to an activity of deduction, clearly stated in one of his poems and suggested by the book title, where the expression “in tagli” (it can be read in two separate words or by joining them together) refers to the concept of subtracting something from something else. This thick and extremely precise language in all his sounds (the author combined alliterations, assonance, internal or ambiguous rhymes with great care), is characterised by logical jumps, the rebellious use of punctuation and the thoughtful balancing of full and empty spaces with the aim to isolate and give importance to each single word, inviting the reader to linger on each one of them. The poetry resides in the bones, in the body structure, it’s solid as a rock and ready to softly crumble. It has been kept alive by the constant tension towards a desire to be defined, the will to hold tight what is trying to escape and the inclination to crumble, proper of the human being. The author has imposed a planned organisation on this fugacious language by dividing the collection into five sections that, however, flow into each other, challenging the page boundaries, thanks to the recurring elements that create a consistent book, or better to say “consistent books” if we think about Alessandro’s works. Each section is nevertheless characterised by a peculiar theme that corresponds to the specific relationship in which the inner self and the body are involved, in terms of time and space, but also love, sacrifice and reflexion into the other being. The imposing “I” and “you” of the first section are joined by the “we” in the second one, which evokes the concept of communion, involving also different generations and considering the “unsaid love” to the people met through the screen. The central section defines a caesura since it is the ultimate tribute to music, physical and metaphysical art, while in the following two sections the “other”, which was previously characterised by a universal meaning, is now enriched by specific details and interpreted as two well-defined figures with a caring and loving approach: the father and the loved man. A mature and sophisticated book, resulting from a long journey that, as the author specifies in his note, has come to an end and leaves us waiting to see which direction it will take in the future.