The Resurrection of the Body and the Ruin of the World by Paul Guest

Paul and I went to undergraduate school at The University of Tennessee, Chattanooga together.  His writing was good then and now is spell-binding.  I recently reread his first book, which won the 2002 New Issues Poetry Prize.  Paul's voice is contemplative and rich and his imagery is absurd and sharp.  There is a solid, confident voice in the poems and humor.  This is a great book.  Buy here.


From "Pinocchio"

Once I was wood and my heart was a knot. / From a block my brain was slowly cut-- / legs, arms, knees, and nose, my all of me / peeked out at the prompt of father's blade. / Peach-soft, I took shape like a lesson.


From "Cosmology in Winter for a Broken Heater"

By our bed the heater is home to a yeti. / Nestled serenely and gurgling like soda, / he is no larger than a fist or a tangerine / carved of ice.  Ball of snow, orphaned cloud, / come out, let us find you a home / better than our bedroom


From "In Case of Rapture"

This poem like a car will be left unmanned / and this breath neatly bisected / so that one half of it lingers not at all-- / a shaving of sky, a gull's flutter / in an egg.