Notes for a Praise BookJeff Hardin is extremely sophisticated, mature, and knows exactly what he is doing.

— Toi Derricotte, The Undertaker’s Daughter (Pitt Poetry Series), Academy of American Poets’ Board of Chancellors

An “advocate of letting things lean as they must,” Jeff Hardin does not shy from the realities of a changing world, each poem “the gist of the gist,” that precise and graceful a rendering. Of course there is sorrow in Hardin’s awareness of the present slipping into the past, into “a field gone dark with itself.” And there is beauty, too—as Hardin shows us—in the inevitability of “a compass pointing here / and nowhere else.” Notes for a Praise Book is the welcome new work of a wise and generous poet.

— Claudia Emerson, Late Wife (LSU Press, winner Pulitzer Prize)


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  1. Debra Kaufman

    This is a beautiful collection of poems. Jeff will be reading at Durham Tech and at Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill on March 14.

  2. richard krawiec

    An intelligent, engaged review of Jeff Hardin’s “Notes for a Praise Book.”

    “Poets from Osip Mandelstam to Edward Hirsch have observed that a poem is like a message in a bottle, a kind of personal missive from the poet to the unknown reader. Certainly the poems that resonate most strongly are often those that clearly have the flavor of messages, with the writer speaking confidingly to his audience, expressing emotions and impressions readers can recognize within themselves. Many of the poems in Jeff Hardin’s Notes for a Praise Book have just this intimate quality, with Hardin’s strong, individual voice using imagery—usually drawn from rural life and the natural world—to convey philosophical and spiritual insights.”

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