cover image Someone Will Go on Owing: Selected Poems, 1966-1992

Someone Will Go on Owing: Selected Poems, 1966-1992

Andrew Glaze. Black Belt Press, $25 (224pp) ISBN 978-1-881320-91-3

Balance, born of conciliated tension and contradiction, characterizes Glaze's work collected here. Selections from Glaze's Pulitzer-nominated first book, Damned Ugly Children (1966), lean toward surrealism and audacity, whereas more recent poems are more lyrical, as in the anthropomorphism of ""Little Hero"": ""Little hero, that's lifting up rivers/ across one shoulder,/ moving off mountains of horse-muck,/ washing out dead air/ from closed yellow caves/ ....Immortal hero, indestructible magician,/ gossip and love-maker/ --Spring!"" Glaze's balancing of blame and praise leads to the conceit of the title poem, in which he speaks of the debt of living: ""So I undream, perplexed, the grisly rights and wrongs,/ the million good-hearted ways/ which spring up like dragon's teeth from the tilth/ in which I've long since sowed an earnest faith/ that I can love irreconcileables into one,/ and track my pettifoggeries and crimes/ back to their human birth in goodwill."" Whether tackling the demands of art in the wondrous ""Dog Dancing,"" with its old man and his delightful performing canines, or the creeping of mortality in ""Machine of Years,"" Glaze takes a highly personal stance. Sometimes he's confessional, at other times declamatory. Without conceit or embarrassment he purposefully inhabits the role of poet as bard and minor prophet. (July)