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Dreams of the Presidents

Best Seller
Dreams of the Presidents by Charles Barasch
Paperback $12.95
Sep 09, 2008 | ISBN 9781556437502

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  • Sep 09, 2008 | ISBN 9781556437502

    Also available from:

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“With the grueling neverending election finally behind us, Charles Barasch’s magnificent book lets loose one last broadside at the insane zoo that is American politics. The conceit is simple: 42 poems, one for each president, in the form of a possible dream that president might have. The result is surreal, funny and even poignant at times.”
—Dan Szczesny, Hippo Manchester

“The dreams drift lazily over the harder prose of the footnotes, forming a world saturated with sexual imagery and guilt about slavery and imperialism. Melancholic Presidents wander the White House hallways, grieving over dead children and spouses. Lillian Gish and Marilyn Monroe, who were half ghosts already, rub against the dreams’ surfaces. The poems are a delicious smoke curling around the Presidents; something like the fantasy air around the ad men on TV drama Mad Men, which could’ve easily been Barasch’s title.”
—Allen Shelton, PASTE Magazine

"None of the dreams in Dreams of the Presidents is real. But they’re a brilliant concoction. And if we are ever to come to terms with the exaggerated importance we have assigned to our presidents, we will have to see these men (and women) as they are, not larger than life, but sized appropriately—and as human and flawed and brilliant and scarred as each of us."
—Nat Frothingham, The Bridge

Author Q&A

Vermont Public Radio interview with the author 9/24/08:

Table Of Contents

Foreword XIII
George Washington 1
John Adams 2
Thomas Jefferson 4
James Madison 6
James Monroe 8
John Quincy Adams 10
Andrew Jackson 12
Martin Van Buren 15
William Henry Harrison 17
John Tyler 18
James Polk 20
Zachary Taylor 23
Millard Fillmore 25
Franklin Pierce 27
James Buchanan 29
Abraham Lincoln 31
Andrew Johnson 33
Ulysses Grant 34
Rutherford Hayes 36
James Garfield 39
Chester Arthur 41
Grover Cleveland 43
Benjamin Harrison 45
William McKinley 47
Theodore Roosevelt 49
William Taft 51
Woodrow Wilson 53
Warren Harding 56
Calvin Coolidge 58
Herbert Hoover 60
Franklin Roosevelt 62
Harry Truman 65
Dwight Eisenhower 67
John Kennedy 70
Lyndon Johnson 72
Richard Nixon 74
Gerald Ford 76
Jimmy Carter 78
Ronald Reagan 80
George H.W. Bush 82
Bill Clinton 84
George W. Bush 86
Name Index 87
About the Author 93

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