By Kwame Dawes
“He is young, highly original and intelligent, possessing poetic sensibility that is rooted and sound, unshakeable and unstopped, both in its vibrancy and direction. He writes poetry as it ought to be written.”
World Literature Today (USA)
“The busiest man in literature…prolific poet, passionate teacher and high priest of reggae…”
Independent on Sunday (UK)
The winning manuscript of the fourth annual Hollis Summers Poetry Prize is also the exciting American debut by a poet who has already established himself as an important international poetic voice. Midland, the seventh collection by Kwame Dawes, draws deeply on the poet's travels and experiences in Africa, the Caribbean, England, and the American South. Marked equally by a lushness of imagery, an urgency of tone, and a muscular rhythm, Midland, in the words of the final judge, Eavan Boland, is “a powerful testament of the complexity, pain, and enrichment of inheritance...It is a compelling meditation on what is given and taken away in the acts of generation and influence. Of a father’s example and his oppression. There are different places throughout the book. They come willfully in and out of the poems: Jamaica. London. Africa. America. But all the places become one place in the central theme and undersong here: which is displacement...The achievement of this book is a beautifully crafted voice which follows the painful and vivid theme of homelessness in and out of the mysteries of loss and belonging.”
Midland is the work of a keen and transcendent intellect, a collection of poems that speaks to the landscape from inside, from an emotional and experiential place of risk and commitment.
Kwame Dawes was born in Ghana, grew up in Jamaica, and studied and taught in New Brunswick, Canada. He has published five volumes of poetry, an anthology of reggae poetry, and a critical volume on reggae music and literature. His first book of poems, Progeny of Air, won the prestigous Forward Poetry Prize. He teaches at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. More info →
Save 20% ($11.96)
Save 20% ($19.96)
US and Canada only
Availability and price vary according to vendor.
Permission to reprint
Permission to photocopy or include in a course pack via Copyright Clearance Center
For more than 30 years Thomas McGrath has held a special place among American poets. His lyric and rhapsodic strengths are unequalled. His use of rhetoric and of the sonorities of poetic speech have been compared to Hart Crane and Dylan Thomas. McGrath's work has become more significant in recent years, as a new generation of pets with intense political concerns have discovered his work.
In his new collection of poems, Dick Davis, the acclaimed author of Belonging, addresses themes that he has long worked with—travel, the experience of being a stranger, the clash of cultures, the vagaries of love, the pleasures and epiphanies of meaning that art allows us.
The poetry of John Matthias has long been admired by other poets for the way it refuses to be categorized. Lyrical and experimental, cosmopolitan and rooted in place, it challenges our received notions of what poetry can be at the end of the twentieth century. This volume introduces the work of this significant American poet to readers previously unfamiliar with it and enriches the reading of those who have long admired it.
To take the mess of life and make meaning from it is what all poets seek to do. For Will Wells, recipient of the thirteenth annual Hollis Summers Poetry Prize, this includes reaching across centuries and continents, into the minds and hearts of disparate individuals—Albert Einstein, Andrea Yates, the traveler from Porlock, Dante, or Holocaust survivors, including his own grandmother—to extract the personal value embedded there for him.