Boyfriend Mountain

Tyler Brewington and Kelly Schirmann. Poor Claudia (SPD, dist.), $15 trade paper (122p) ISBN 978-0-9908324-1-6
This collection, a collaborative tĂȘte-bĂȘche from two highly regarded emerging poets in Portland, Ore., stands out by way of the emotional landscape these two poets create when they combine their palettes. Brewington's poems locate themselves in a region of awe, diffidence, melancholy, and trust in beauty; many of his lines find ways to introduce all of these elements at once. "There's a sort of bright tobacco brown," he writes, "I put against a chocolate brown/ When I'm finally angry enough to believe what I know." The onion-layering of Brewington's poems makes for both a counterpoint and a seamless blend with Schirmann's work, which operates in a complex zone of angst, hilarity, ennui, and outrage. "Eventually our choices/ become the need to endure our choices," she writes. "We are on this earth for such a short time/ but I still hope to be dead by then." What grows out of the valley in which these two bodies of work touch is a love song to a world that can't love either poet back enough. "Monogamy broke across the house like rain," writes Brewington, and both poets find their melancholy, their gratitude, and their voices by standing in that rain, regardless of the boyfriends that come crashing off the mountain in the process. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 07/06/2015
Release date: 12/01/2014
Genre: Fiction
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