Tag archives for 2016 Publications

An Elegy

“Difficult as it is to describe honestly the spectacle of living, to describe death and dying is to go almost where language can’t: past knowledge, experience, or the reliable image. Yet what An Elegy achieves, through its own assured music, is this very contradiction: to go ‘in places where you never were,’ to honor the dead as well as to reimagine them, knowing that grief is as much the mind’s ‘calculus of human work’ as it is the heart’s. Here are words worth their urgency.”

— Rickey Laurentiis, Boy with Thorns, winner 2016 Levis Reading Prize

A Dog’s Life

ADL-front-coverWinner 2016 Jacar Press Full-length Contest

 

A Dog’s Life is a delightful romp through Americana by way of ‘real’ America with sly, politically engaged poems. Though this poet issues a rallying cry against ‘siren songs of entertainment,’ his poems are completely entertaining but, at the same time, completely wise. He takes on true love, extinction, our fragile environment, war, technology, porn, aging and our fight against it, cancer, nursing homes, and death. A Dog’s Life is an enlightened look at Doritos, Carson Daly, Walmart, McDonalds, theme parks, and, of course, dogs.”
    — Denise Duhamel
 
“The real singers – whether lamenting or praising – give us a sense of life as larger than we could have expressed before they arrived. With an explorer’s curiosity and drive, Adam Scheffler turns his poems into a treasury. He speaks of the value and wonder in small and large things, and like a dog (the dog he’d have us believe his soul is), meets the world with undisguised exuberance. These poems are spiritual in the way poetry is best suited to be: they articulate our good fortune to be alive.”
    — Bob Hicok

Raising the Sky

RTS cover  (1)

Raising the Sky is unpretentious, attempts no lofty poetic experiments with heavy themes but rather surges with philosophy caked on the sneaker bottoms of young slickster/trickster wannabes, and top-shelf gold standard prose shuffled across army fatigue blankets. Howard Craft allows the reader to perceive the moments, landscapes, and particulars of his own brand of Southern urbanism. He takes us there. Place. Physicality. His poetry becomes the hushed drum carrying the meter of persistence, racial identity, and invocations of the immensity… in which the unavoidable are saddled hip to hip to joy and revelation.
 
These poems remind us that our ancestors continue to whisper in our ears, remind us that we are at the helm steering ourselves, on our own terms, through yet another Middle Passage.”
    
    — Jaki Shelton Green

Threshing Floor

TF front cover

Threshing Floor is a serious book of poems in series.  These retellings of the Biblical Naomi are compelling and soulful.”

— Denise Duhamel

 
Threshing Floor tells the story of three women, their vulnerability and displacement; it will grip and hold women.  But, please God, may the book also be read by men—lots of men—because these poems are models of empathy in a world that sorely needs it.”

— Jeanne Murray Walker, author of Helping the Morning: New and Selected Poems

Dante’s Anteroom

DA-front-cover“Margaret Rabb’s career in poetry was a romance with words…This descendant of Confederates, this servant of transvestites, cloud- chronicler, bibliophile, Anglican and Romantic, knew that the distance between the searcher and the bookshelf was intercontinental and yet intimate, that the time it took to find the special poem, the one addressed to the reader (and written by that same reader), was a lifetime and yet an instant.”

    — David Rigsbee, author of School of the Americas, Not Alone in My Dancing:  Essays and Reviews, and The Red Tower: New and Selected Poems.

Resisting Arrest

“One of the Ten Best Poetry Books of 2016″*
                                  

Proceeds go to a scholarship fund for African American youth,
administered by the Urban League in Washington, D.C.
                                     

Resisting ArrestPolice killings of citizens of color are becoming an American past time way past its prime. But one thing we can depend on in this hour of chaos, confusion, clarity, outrage and sorrow: America’s media will certainly be there to insinuate itself, however crudely, however clumsily and rudely, into the sickness of the American psyche.

 

No need for me to further enumerate the endless trail of police violations, brutalities, killings. I’ll let the poets sing their names. I’ll let the Tradition say, Amen! For the great and socially committed poets assembled herein have been engaged in call and response; bearing witness to the maladies of a nation whose so-called founding begins with brutality and policing; begins with genocide, confiscation and death in the name of profit, greed and expansion.

 

The poet-witnesses in this collection distill the horror and let in the light of our common humanity. They remind us of a universal hurt, grief, anger, rage, shame and love that we all can recall when confronting the blunt reality and the savagery of abuses associated with corrupted power, indifference and intolerance.

 

This is not a catalogue of death and despair. This is a work of resistance and resilience. These poets sing songs of love, which is what this book is, essentially.

 

Guernica.”

— Tony Medina

Poems by, in order of appearance –
Martín Espada, Joel Dias-Porter, Afaa Michael Weaver, Sonia Sanchez, Camille Rankine, Patricia Spears Jones, Rae Paris, Maria Mazziotti Gillan, Roger Bonair-Agard, Kwame Dawes, Nile Lansana, Keith Gilyard, Ana Castillo, Jabari Asim, Derrick Weston Brown, Mahogany L. Browne, Venus Thrash, Kelly Norman Ellis, T.J. Anderson, Reuben Jackson, Phillip B. Williams , giovanni singleton, Jericho Brown, Ching-In Chen, Niki Herd, Metta Sáma, Frank X Walker, Khadijah Queen, Danny Simmons, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Jaki Shelton Green, Raina Leon,Veronica Golos, Marilyn Nelson, Kenji C. Liu, Marilyn Singer, Adam Falkner, L. Lamar Wilson, Jon Sands, Cornelius Eady, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Quincy Scott Jones, Douglas Kearney, LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs, Howard Craft, Malcolm Friend, Kamilah Aisha Moon, Brian Gilmore, Lynne Thompson, Kim Roberts, M. Askia Toure, Mitchell L.H. Douglas,Ricardo Nazario y Colón, Tara Betts, Jamaal May, Rashidah Ismaili, James E. Cherry, Quraysh Ali Lansana , Bao Phi, devorah major, Khadijah Queen, Yusef Komunyakaa, Abdul Ali, Allison Joseph , Reuben Jackson, Minal Hajratwala, b: william bearhart, Jane Alberdeston Coralin, Esther Iverem, Jerry W. Ward, Jr., Ishmael Reed, Howard Craft, Quincy Troupe, Thylias Moss, Haki Madhubuti, Everett Hoagland, Tennessee Reed, Onam Lansana, Marvin K. White,  Zeina Hashem Beck, Lauren K Alleyne, Rita Dove, Mark Doty, Ruth Ellen Kocher, Ross Gay, Joy Harjo

*Beltway Poetry Journal         

Creeks of the Upper South

COTUS-front-cover“The poems in Creeks of the Upper South rely on call and response—both within individual poems and from poem to poem—which seems fitting, given the collaborative nature of the collection. At times, the  voices and personal narratives are alive and burgeoning, and at the same time fragile. Other times, primal and colloquial language fuses into a lexicon of ecological anxieties and understandings. This collection calls us to take off our boots, roll up our britches, and follow the creeks and voices meandering and forking through these poems.  We can’t help but respond.”  

    — Adam Vines

 

“Creeks of the Upper South is collaborative poetry at flood-surge. It is a braided stream, the skitter-flight of water fowl, a storm event of vowels, childhood as rocky shoals, cut-bank in language’s flow. Amy Wright and William Wright walk back the postmodern idea that word and place, signifier and signified, can’t roil the same deep channel.”

    — John Lane

 

This book is being published collaboratively with Unicorn Press.

After the Three Moon Era

ATTME-CoverWinner of the 2015 Jacar Press Poetry Book Prize

In After the Three Moon Era, Gary Fincke keeps returning to the missing, the vanished, the disappeared. The speaker of his sharply-etched poems is a man in late middle age, caught between a grandchild who whirls unafraid on an open staircase and a disheartened father of ninety who asks, “What’s next?” Fincke brings a penetrating gaze and an elegiac tenderness to the telling “news items” he discovers in a world haunted by intimations of mortality.
— Chana Bloch, author of Swimming in the Rain, New & Selected Poems, 1980-2015

 

Gary Fincke’s sweeping After the Three Moon Era is a razor-edged investigation of our modern reality: its wars and chemical plants, its familial aches and obligations, its daily reminders of mortality’s inescapable pull. These poems see clear-eyed into the darkness, but maintain an abiding wonder at the mysteries (the earth’s once-upon-a-time three moons; sinkholes’ habit of appearing on Thursdays) that grace our mundane lives so that they, like these poems, quietly glow. Incisive, empathetic, and arresting, this is an absolute knockout of a book.
— Catherine Pierce, author of The Girls of Peculiar and Famous Last Words

Astonished to Wake


Astonished to Wake
Julie Suk, Astonished to Wake.

“The poetry of Julie Suk is at once deceptively spare and metaphorically rich, and the sensual mystery of her perfectly pitched and etched lines is haunting, elemental, and wild,”  says R. T. Smith.  In her 6th collection, Suk continues to write poems that are deeply sensuous and unflinching. Her awards include the University of Arkansas Poetry Competition, the Roanoke-Chowan Award, the Brockman-Campbell Award, the Bess Hokin Prize from Poetry magazine. She is a former  managing editor of Southern Poetry Review. Publication date January, 2016.