poems often drape a variably elegant and brooding diction over the gears of a
razor sharp, at times surprisingly romantic, intellect.
— Publishers Weekly, July 2001
poems pretend to see the traditionally framed poetic endeavour as quixotic, but
under cover of this seeming ironizing framework the poems cast out towards
ambitiously Romantic and metaphysical promontories far from the bedrock of the
quotidian and believable.
— Ken Bolton, Jacket 16, March 2002 (On-line
seldom fails to obey the lyric imperatives, to corral his materials into the
confines of a traditional lyric poem. For all their shuffling and sifting,
their randomness and hilarity, the poems tend to resolve themselves with
Horatian decorum and elegance.
— George Green, Poetry Project Newsletter,
is constantly delightful, makes you smile with sheer enjoyment and he can be
sharp and funny and digressive by turns in ways that reminded me not just of
Koch and O’Hara and other New York poets, but also Byron, and even Pope at his
— Steven Waling, The North (U.K.), 2002
is one of the New York School’s best-kept secrets. For those who haven’t yet
discovered his rich and strange poetry, and for those who have been invigorated
by it over the past thirty years, this generous collection will be a feast.
— John Ashbery
History of the Invitation belongs in every library of poetry, possibly on its
very own shelf.
— Billy Collins
surprising lyricism of the early poems and the incisive witty discourse of the
darker late ones are both part of a poetry at the same time direct and highly
artistic. Tony Towle’s is one of the clear, authentic voices of American
— Kenneth Koch
erudite, stunning with ease and quirky sanity, Tony Towle’s massive Selected
is a phenomenal measure of a poet’s nearly four decades’ mind in poetry. This
book is a grand achievement; a tome of such human generosity and wit is not to
— Anne Waldman