"Forget the orchestra/ conduct the pit!" National Book Award and PEN winning translator Clayton Eshleman commands, of both himself and his muses in a search for "the abyss, the recesses of the mind, the darkness of political domination, the gulf between worlds." Featuring the major forces behind the surrealist movement from around the world including Rimbaud, Pablo Neruda, Cesar Vallejo, Aime Cesaire, Andre Breton, Vladimir Holan and Antonin Artaud, his essential study brings these poets to a new generation of creative hearts. From Rimbaud's obscure and harrowing "Drunken Boat" with its "very sea whose sobbing made my churning sweet" to Pablo Neruda's "tongue of death looking for the dead, /the needles of death looking for the thread," Conductors of the Pit is unlike any poetry anthology of its kind. In this mesmerizing and fully annotated volume, the major works of experimental poetry that have shaped the modern age are at last available side by side, along with a historical and cultural overview by the editor.