"You know what? The bastard blows me out of the water. This guy writes Maine like Ardai writes New York. If you're not reading him, you don't know what you're missing." --Chris F. Holm, author of The Big Reap, The Wrong Goodbye and Dead Harvest.

"Bagley's got the poet's eye, but that doesn't mean everything is prettier in his work. It means the ugly stuff is more vivid. More intense. Like a sudden switch from analog to HD. And that's a trait to very much admire in his work." --Anthony Neil Smith, author of Hogdoggin', Yellow Medicine, The Drummer and Psychosomatic.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Not the Usual (Poetry) Suspects

“You ask me, those guys are doing God's work, taking poetry back from the beret set.” —Chris F. Holm

I know what you’re thinking. Yeah, I do.

Ewww, poetry. I hate poetry. All that stuff about Greek urns, lilacs in dooryards and Hiawatha. Symbolism? Rhyme and meter? Rod fucking McKuen. Booooooring. Poetry sucks.

If you believe that’s all there is to poetry, then I pity you. You’re missing out on a lot of great writing. You’ve missed Charles Bukowski, Hayden Carruth, Victor Hernández Cruz, Martín Espada, Louise Glück, Mary Oliver, Sharon Olds, Tim Seibles, Ann Sexton, Charles Simic, Patricia Smith, Christopher Watkins, James Wright, Kevin Young and far too many others. But it’s not too late, my friend.

One way to wrap your head around some of the good stuff is to order your very own copy of The Lineup: Poems on Crime. Our first annual anthology has poems by the likes of Ken Bruen, Sarah Cortez, Daniel Hatadi, R. Narvaez and Sandra Seamans. Do you think Ken Bruen would write poetry if it did not kick serious ass?

But crime poetry? That’s just, like, weird.

You’ll find everything you love about crime fiction in these poems: murderers, shylocks, dope fiends, bent cops, good cops, punk-ass kids, kidnappers and just plain old normal folks who happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. As far as I know, The Lineup is the first-ever anthology of crime poems. It’s literary history in the making. This is noir poetry, buddy. The hard-boiled stuff. It’s a hell of a lot of fun to read, too.


Chris said...

In a multiverse of all possible worlds, there still ain't one where a blurb of mine should help sell anything with Bruen's name on it. I mean shit, what more do people need than that? In fact, I'd go so far as to say that there's no such thing as a random Chuck Norris fact -- just stuff about Ken Bruen that he lets Chuck Norris borrow.

Patrick Shawn Bagley said...

I got a kick out of the "doing God's work" bit. I'm usually accused of being a pawn of Satan or the servant of some vile and unspeakable secular humanist conspiracy.