Category Archives: Reviews

On Poets & Poetry: Salt to the World

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BYU Studies Quarterly just published my review essay on two recent poetry collections: Susan Elizabeth Howe’s Salt (Signature Books, 2013) and Lance Larsen’s Genius Loci (University of Tampa Press, 2013). Both collections are well-worth your time and they sustain and reward multiple readings. Here’s an excerpt, right from the middle of my review, to whet your lyric appetite: Mormon theology… Read more »

Mormon Novelist Angela Hallstrom Reviews Fire in the Pasture

In volume 52.3 of BYU Studies, Angela Hallstrom shared 500 words (or so) on why Fire in the Pasture matters. Here’s what she concludes: Although the readership of poetry anthologies is not large, it is encouraging that Fire in the Pasture collects and preserves many of Mormonism’s most potent poetic voices from the early twenty-first century, making them available for… Read more »

Two Goodreads Reviews: “I own this one and I love it!” & “SO many excellent poets!”

In my efforts to keep my finger on the pulse of Fire in the Pasture, I came across two Goodreads reviews of the anthology, one by Laura Craner, the other by Dayna Patterson. Laura blogs for A Motley Vision: Mormon Literature and Culture and Dayna Patterson is a poet and the editor of Psaltery & Lyre, an online poetry mag…. Read more »

“The Feeling of Knowing”: Brent Corcoran’s Review of Fire

I remembered the other day that the Fall 2012 issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought includes a review of Fire in the Pasture. It’s titled “The Feeling of Knowing” and was written by Brent Corcoran, a fellow poet (his name’s in the index included at the end of the anthology) and Dialogue‘s production manager. Here’s a snippet, which… Read more »

In the Beginning, the End: Some Initial Thoughts on Susan Elizabeth Howe’s Salt

This past Saturday, my review copy of Susan Elizabeth Howe‘s new book, Salt, arrived. I’ll be reviewing it for A Motley Vision and expect to have my essay completed and posted sometime in the next month or two, but in the meantime I wanted to post my initial response to the collection. While I haven’t yet read beyond the first… Read more »

Giving the Beauty of Holiness a Tongue (Part Two)

Giving the Beauty of Holiness a Tongue: A Review Essay on Adam’s Dream: Poems for a Latter Day by Doug Talley (Part Two) (Read Part One here) III. Adam’s Dream is divided into four sections: “Land within Arm’s Reach,” “Temples Framed by Hand,” “Voices from Another Room,” and “Flowers of a Kiss.” Each section contains eighteen poems and is framed… Read more »

Giving the Beauty of Holiness a Tongue (Part One)

Giving the Beauty of Holiness a Tongue: A Review Essay on Adam’s Dream: Poems for a Latter Day by Doug Talley (Part One)* I. During the fourth month of my wife’s first pregnancy, she started spotting. Startled by her yell from the bathroom where she’d been getting ready for work, I ran from the kitchen and met her halfway down… Read more »

“The Points at which My Loves Fell from Me”: Philip White’s The Clearing

Anthology Poet Highlight 22/82: Philip White, The Clearing In this book dedicated to his late father, mother, and wife, Philip invites us to feel our way around in the soul-space excavated by love and life, loss and death. Framed, then, as elegiac meditations on the loss of persons beloved, the poet lingers on these moments of departure—what the speaker in… Read more »

“A Delicious Lapping”: Lance Larsen’s In All Their Animal Brilliance

Anthology Poet Highlight 15/82: Lance Larsen, In All Their Animal Brilliance American poet Lola Haskins blurbed about Lance’s second collection that “the book stands out” in the field of contemporary American poetry for at least two reasons: first, because “it travels—from a talisman in the first poem to a vineyard in the last, in which metaphors of growth and renewal… Read more »

Warren Hatch’s Mapping the Bones of the World: “An Economy of Grace”

Anthology Poet Highlight 13/82: Warren (Scott) Hatch, Mapping the Bones of the World Although it might seem contradictory to suggest that Mapping the Bones of the World, a collection of long narrative poems, is economical—as if the poet had composed from a frugal rhetorical budget, determined to compress experience into as tight a linguistic vessel as he could craft in… Read more »