CLOSE / Parnassiad collects the first two poetry collections by Julian Darius, newly annotated by the author with a new introduction and 21 previously unpublished poems, bringing the total number of poems to 147. These poems range from the highly literary ("On Parnassus with My Post-Coital Cigarette.") to the highly personal ("Traveler"). Included are poems on feminism, postmodernism, poetry, President Clinton, modern society, hedonism, sadomasochism, homosexuality, 9-11, and Jesus Christ. One poem responds to Kipling; the next calls you to imagine the process of biological evolution through the consciousnesses of the creatures involved. Other poems address Ezra Pound, Charles Bukowski, and The Waste Land -- often followed by bold intellectual observations that leave the reader both laughing and contemplating.