Perfect Day takes us to the centre of a labyrinth. A nonchalant-looking (but deeply crafted) consonance of mood, syntax, and rhyme suggests a tone of wryness, which comes to life as a persona both worldly- and otherworldly-wise. He catches hold of our arm and takes us on a probing, compelling tour of his material and spiritual neighbourhood. At its end, we seem to know him as well as we know ourselves, and even to know those points where knowledge vanishes into the unfathomable, “thinking morning thoughts / at the edge of the known world.” Or have we been looking in mirrors the whole time, magicked into a journey of self-discovery by this extraordinary poetic voice?
– John Reibetanz
This is a poetry of great insight and variety, a balance of energy, intelligence and skill. Leif Vaage takes us through the pleasures, horrors and ordinariness of many days to find the perfection of our days in “these brief moments of awakening” in which we find ourselves poised “before a revelation that always recedes.” In Vaage’s glimpse of life’s difficult, imperfect perfection, I don’t know whether to prefer his intriguing complex images, his often relaxed always penetrating voice, his hard but sympathetic irony, or the moments of pure lyric eloquence: “I learn of the daytime kindness. In the night / I knock on the stranger’s door …”
– A.F. Moritz