Say It Again

an autobiography in sonnets

by Michael Lally

What Critics Are Saying:

“This is a great book! This series of 450 sonnets is such a gripping wild ride I found it hard to put down.  Michael Lally, a professional jazz pianist in his youth, writes sonnets like jazz choruses, each a complete vignette, each moving ahead the narrative of his life.  Hundreds of characters fill these sonnets. Each sonnet contains sharp descriptions of people he has met, their struggles, their humor, their art, each person portrayed with love and respect.  Wherever he goes, whoever he meets, he learns new ways of being, new ways of loving, new ways of writing. He listens to the music of people’s lives and it is echoed in the music of his words. Frank O’Hara

wanted poetry that is better than the movies. This is it! Turn off Netflix and buy this book!“

—Chris Mason

“Michael Lally’s risky, talky, autobiographic, ethnic, disarming, poignant, desperate, consoling, elegiac, wily, vernacular lyrics have been charming and challenging the poetry world for half a century.” 

—Charles Bernstein

“Michael Lally is a gregarious, theatrical, indefatigable, funny, and sometimes pugnacious master of the American idiom. Such amazing works. . .provide all the evidence you need to link Lally with Frank O’Hara and Ted Berrigan. . . .” 

—David Lehman

“…Finally if you just wanna talk about Lally as a poet, he’s a sonneteer. A guy with a lute. A maker of that precise little form that spawns so many multiples of itself.”

—Eileen Myles 

Poetry honors include: NYC 92nd St. Y Poetry Center’s

1972 Discovery Award for The South Orange Sonnets;

two National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowships

(1974 and 1981, the second attacked in Congress—the

NEA accused of rewarding “pornography” for the poem

“My Life”—in the first attempt to defund the NEA); 1997

PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for “Excellence in

Literature” for Cant Be Wrong; 2000 American Book Award

for It’s Not Nostalgia. In 2018 Another Way To Play: Poems

1960-2017 published. Also worked as script writer/“doctor,”

editor, columnist, book reviewer for The Village Voice and

The Washington Post among other publications, and TV

and film actor (as Michael David Lally). Writes the blog

Lally’s Alley on poetry, politics, movies, and other arts.