At first glance, Amanda Hurtado's poems appear to be completely impenetrable parades of apparently unrelated words arranged in meaningless patterns across the page. If you keep reading, though, the poems begin to have a strange effectiveness, and eventually you begin to see the words themselves in an entirely new and exhilarating way.
Hurtado's structures are reductive. Syntax — the systematic connection between words which gives linear discourse its character of extended meaning — is simply removed. This leaves our attention open to the ways in which words can become instruments of a visual order and of an order of sound that is abstract but not meaningless. What is happening here is a reversal of the normal reading experience. The mind turns back toward the unitary experience of words as structure. Hurtado's experiments invite us to regard words as objects, as organisms with patterns of existing which are specific to themselves, inexplicable and marvelous.