cover image Arrows


Dan Beachy-Quick. Tupelo, $22.95 ISBN 978-1-946482-30-3

The opening poem to the meditative seventh book by Beachy-Quick (Of Silence and Song) provides a preface, “a wandering/ introduction/ to wonder’s/ barbed dislocations.” What follows are short, spare poems with a beautiful lyrical sweep that explore sensory stimuli (optics, music) and systems of organization and knowledge (religion, ethics, prosody), all with a careful eye for striking imagery and sound: “anger, calm/ it’s only a stone, the mind—/ stone with storm inside—.” Included are also poems inspired by classical writers and stories, some that seem to speak to greater literary motifs: “The wind blows many things off course./ A strong gust tears the winnowed husk in two/ Carries the chaff in different directions... But different versions mostly end the same./ This story is about a man and a ship” (“Theseus’s Ship”). The final poem revels in the collection’s sonic play: “a moth/ and a moth, and a month, or a mouth,/ or is it a month, yes, all torn out.” With a light touch and a clear gift for sound and sense, Beachy-Quick delivers a stirring collection of unusual thoughtfulness. (July)