Tuesday, September 30, 2008
I read a beautiful poetry cycle this morning. "Cemetery Country" by Ronald Baatz. It's part of a split chapbook co-authored by the fabulous Mark Weber just out on Zerx Press. The story of Ronald's relationship with his dad and the latter's final months battling (if that isn't completely the wrong word) Alzheimer's Disease. Poetry is poetry, you might think--pleasant, diverting, chuckle-inducing, but essentially a slight experience in this world of fast and cheap thrills. But "Cemetery Country" is brilliantly written and profoundly beautiful. After I'd read the last poem on the morning bus I had three waves of the shivers (you know, the kind you get when you're really moved) and a knot in my chest the size of a baseball glove. Read more about it, if you're interested, at whollycommunion.blogspot.com and investigate Baatz's whole body of work, as a matter of urgency. You'll kick yourself when he's not around anymore and you realise you've had such greatness in your midst.