Tag archives for 2015 Publications


IntimacyIntimacy is a state of closeness that transcends explanation. It is a feeling of being at home emotionally and physically, a biological need so severe that when we don’t have intimacy with those who are most significant in our lives, the effects can be devastating. When we do find intimacy, it can be transcendent.  


This collection brings together poems that explore intimacy between lovers, friends, parents and children, people and their pets, humans and the environment, and more. Work by dozens of writers including Chana Bloch, Maxine Chernoff, Toi Derricote, John Balaban, Thylias Moss, Leanne O’Sullivan, Richard Jackson, Kathryn Stripilng Byer, Jaki Shelton Green and over 70 more poets.


Disquiet“The philosophy and emotional pulse moving behind the words—that and the flawless lineation of the music—just wouldn’t let me go.”
— Jamaal May, Hum (Alice James Books) American Library Association Notable Book Award


“Kelly Michels’ collection takes us to an amazing elsewhere that is both palpable and magical, incantatory, tragic, and beautiful. Beneath the swirl of linked images and the muscular movement and music of the language, throb the stories these poems undertake, not confessional, not pain style, not complaint, not even recounted but instead revealed in a voice with its own clarity and the logic of metaphor holding, even as the real becomes surreal. The images catch the light as they turn together in unlikely yet nearly perfect partnership.


The journey taken here is harrowing, perilous, darkly graceful, and bears truths beyond boundaries. I would follow these designs on the world, these honed knives, these desperate memories anywhere. The journey ends with Tonight in D minor, and I raise my head from these poems with Mystery ringing in my ears. These phrases occur to me: dazzlingly original, deft and wildly successful gamble. Let’s just say that Disquiet is a truly remarkable gathering by a very gifted new poet.”
— Betty Adcock

The Road to Ballyvaughan

The Road to Ballyvaughan“There’s a clean, lively language at work here, full of fine words clearly relished, while those poems lodged in Irish landscapes, both physical and literary, shine with the virtue of authenticity: they see, feel and communicate what’s actually there, what’s been experienced with sharp eye, responsive ear, imaginative understanding. Powered by such energies, Staying Blue stays satisfyingly alive from start to finish.”

— Eamon Grennan


“Gibbons Ruark is a yea-sayer. Here is poetry to give us heart, full of serious praise for life and humankind, in language strong and beautiful. It seems a lovely irony in a time when Irish poetry is thriving that Ruark, with his roots in North Carolina, should stand so high among those contemporary poets who can write of Ireland with the most sympathy and understanding.”

— X. J. Kennedy on Rescue the Perishing


The Vishnu Bird

The Vishnu BirdThe Vishnu Bird is both a memorial and a memoir in lyric poetry. This clean-spoken, deeply-felt chapbook remembers the poet’s dear friend by tracing his vocation of anthropology, and honoring his spiritual depth, through vignettes from the speaker’s own past. Yet if this is a collection of last things, and past things, it also imagines next things.


The Vishnu Bird is above all a book of making—fabrics and lyrics, images and memories—whose textures are richly humane. Kathryn Stripling Byer’s elegiac articulations become, like all true poetry, ‘the hoop / in which we cast our stories’ in order to ‘hold [us] fast.’”


— David Baker


Astir-front-cover“Rich in detail and attentive in focus, Kevin Boyle’s poems rock back and forth between tenderness and irony. In language both fluent and metrical, they explore what it’s like to be alive and awake in today’s shifting cultural environment. Leavened with a fine wit and possessed of a restrained compassion for the male self coming to terms with the layers of his life, these are the sturdy poems of a grown man.”


— Dorianne Laux, author of The Book of Men


“Kevin Boyle’s poems come at you from a variety of angles: fatherhood, childhood, man in the street. Memories of a Philadelphia neighborhood, a boy with his paper route trying to collect, ice on the Delaware River. These are the poems of an America that’s changing and they cover a long arc of time, diverse in method, restless, inventive. They are not without their dark moments, but Boyle’s generosity and humor keep shining through the lines.”


— Joseph Millar, author of Blue Rust

Delicate Thefts

Delicate Thefts“If you have any doubt that Debra Kaufman is one of our best contemporary American poets, then read this collection.”


— Kathryn Stripling Byer, Descent, Coming to Rest, Catching Light and 3 others from LSU Press 


“Which universe does Debra Kaufman inhabit? The “dark, indifferent” one or the one in which “The white pine waves/like a kind neighbor”? Perhaps her universe changes with time and she records these changes in her graceful, thorn-sharp lyrics. What happens around her also happens within her and what she remembers she makes memorable. Perhaps she embraces what her friend once said, “If you listen closely … you can hear things.” Passionate in its angers as well as in its affections and as closely tuned as a clavier, Delicate Thefts is a trove of classy gifts.”


— Fred Chappel, author of Familiars, Shadow Box: Poems and over a dozen other collections from LSU Press.