To call it a novel would be a misnomer; to categorize it as a poetry collection would be just as false. This brings us back to the role of the work as a monument or, more appropriately, testament. As a testament, it has to witness the peculiarities of the age to which it is a witness. With the rise of the Metamodern in world literature, it is strange that a book such as A Humument stands the test of time and vision better from edition to edition as it ages. But, Phillips’ commitment to the revision, a true “re-seeing,” creates a compelling collection of which every edition is a must own.
Or, maybe it is truly the first and last edition of a “human document,” paralleling the human spirit — it wanders like us, wends like us, it changes into ever-morphing forms. Each edition a deletion of memory, even with flaws — just like us.
(via Maureen Doallas on Twitter)