I rarely ever buy hardback books of poetry, but today, in Barnes and Noble, I couldn’t help myself.  You see, a lot of brick and mortar stores have the annoying habit of  stocking the same stuff over and over again.  Walk into any Barnes and Noble, and you’ll likely see this in the “Poetry Section”:  Maya Angelou, Sharon Olds, Mary Oliver, T.S. Eliot, Pablo Neruda, Robert Bly,  some Blue Mountain Arts crap, and very little else.

Tonight, however, I found Paul Guest’s new book, published by Ecco.   I loved Guest’s first book, The Resurrection of the Body and the Ruin of the World.  Even wrote a short review of it for a journal, only to lose it because I lent it to a classmate (Adam Shobert, where ever you are these days!), and then forgot to get it back from him.   It was more likely to my own forgetfulness, as well as graduation approaching.   Once I left graduate school, I hardly read a lot of poetry for four years, and as a result missed the release of his second book (which I’ll have to rectify, soon).

So far, I’ve only read Guest’s first poem, “User’s Guide to Physical Debilitation,” and stumble on these opening lines:

Should the painful condition of irreversible paralysis

last longer than forever, or at least until

your death by bowling ball or illegal lawn dart


Yep, this may very well end up as an awesome read….