Wayne Allen Jones is subject to “en-too-ziasms” (Southside for not knowing when to stop). This volume is the third in eighteen months. Written in 1999 and 2000, these poems speak with a new voice – bolder, more forceful, more energetic, more passionate. The risks are manifold – in subject, point of view, tone, and length – the history of a steel mill and its workers, the ritual of fathers giving guns to sons, a dramatic monologue from a piece of the cross borne by Jesus, a nine-part study on types of rope, and an even longer poem about a misguided walkabout in the Arizona desert.<br /><br />Shorter poems put breathing room between the longer ones, and many speak to the theme of the first book, Stone Works – the way people make sense of the world by imposing their own meanings on what they perceive, what happens, and how they respond. <br />
<p>Few will argue that writing and reading poetry help people discover beauty and truth in the world. These poems show how people create that meaning, organize their lives, and protect themselves from chaos – how they create a truth that brings safety and beauty to their experience, and how, when they fail to forge the link to Nature, the emptiness and the pain are palpable.<br /></p><p>The first section of the book deals with the process by which meaning is created and assigned to or imposed on events and things.<br /><br />The second part shows how well such an approach can work.<br /><br />The third paints the bleaker view when people lose their link with Nature, when they cannot link with each other.</p>
Stow, MA, later moved to Chicago. Abstract borrowed from Fractal Edge.