About the Book:
Winner of the Snowbound Chapbook Award, selected by Lia Purpura
With funky tempos and stretched, staggering lines, Matt Donovan's new sequence interrogates the ways our daily lives teem with beauty and loss. Using figures engrained in American culture to portray collisions of pleasure with tragedy, he summons singers Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday, athlete Babe Ruth, painters Paul Cezanne and John Singer Sargent, and musicians John Coltrane and Lou Reed to offer evidence for what creation can cost. A beloved music teacher who died prematurely is extolled by re-enacting his passion for both Bach and Scott Joplin, and the promise of a first pregnancy is juxtaposed with a surge of family funerals. As "each day lurches us toward ... / things dying, things newborn," the poet of Rapture & the Big Bam can be either a companion in mourning or a celebrant of unbeaten anticipation.
About the Author:
Matt Donovan is the author of a previous book of poems, Vellum (Mariner, 2007), and a collection of essays, A Cloud of Unusual Size and Shape: Meditations on Ruin and Redemption (Trinity University Press, 2016). He is the recipient of a Rome Prize in Literature, a Whiting Writer's Award, a Pushcart Prize, an National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, and the Larry Levis Reading Prize from Virginia Commonwealth University. He teaches at Santa Fe University of Art and Design and is currently collaborating on a chamber opera entitled Inheritance, about the life and legends of firearms heiress Sarah Winchester.