E Pluribus Unum. Out of many, one. Easier said than done, according to TJ Beitelman’s dazzling poetry collection, In Order to Form a More Perfect Union. In this intricately layered and obliquely linked sequence of aubades, elegies, curses, and fractured mythic narratives, Beitelman susses out the complicated calculus of forming a viable whole from a necessarily uncertain sum of imperfectly assorted parts. Making homage to a representative cast of true Americans—Bob Dylan, William Carlos Williams, Emily Dickinson, and none other than the timelessly tragic trio of John Hinckley, Jodie Foster, and Ronald Reagan—this is a book concerned with discerning the truest truths we hold to be self-evident, whether forging a new nation, facing a lover for the very last time, or attempting—without any real reason—to believe in the better version of ourselves.