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SMOKING IN THE
TWILIGHT BAR
Barbara Henning
92 pages, paperback
Cover by Harriette Hartigan
Copyright 1988
$5.00

"Smoking in the Twilight Bar is a collection of tales of the nocturnal lives of working women, an intelligent and sensitive portrayal of the urban night. Moving from bars to poolhalls to bedrooms, the stories are of violence and sexuality, understood but not judged. Like glimpses from the street through lighted windows, these brief paragraphs are at first discontinuous; they evolve, gradually, into narrative the way lives come together to make a city." Charles Baxter

"Shaped like the spaces of open windows, Henning's works are snapshots of a stark reality, squares of light on a dark wall. Her bold black and white scenarios are of tough, durable women, barefaced and vulnerable survivors. She has written their pictures." Maureen Owen

"These are poems with a very hard edge to them. Be warned: this is not a book for those who want poetry to laud some kind of idealized fantasy of what life should be. This is a poet who is not about to make compromises with what she sees as the truth of human existence. This is a book of unvarnished reality... These are our ghosts, the millions of America's metropolitan flotsam, whose sheer numbers alone make their story worth consideration, but who are hardly ever the stuff of poetry." Thomas Strand

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