A Cloud of Witnesses

A Cloud of Witnesses is available through Amazon, Small Press Distribution and elsewhere. View a sample here.

A CLOUD OF WITNESSES is a verse-novel that is not in verse and isn't a novel. In it, people misplace objects, learn trivia about venomous snakes, and write their family histories in Morse code. Each poem is a chapter born of misremembered plots and of an affinity for the many texts it echoes. Imagination and memory intertwine. A vow of love is a confrontation of death where "To love someone you must dream about them dying."

"The traits of the book are themselves a personality: the monkish, loving way that the book arranges its words, its insistence that something fundamental and central is missing, the obvious boredom it feels at the prospect of moving from one event to another in causally determined lockstep. At turns playful, lonely, dreamy, and dead sincere, the book's manner of speaking is as complex as thought itself."
- Boxcar Poetry Review

"There is a music in them, these poems, a symphony told in blasts of scat beats, like thick little windows with differing views of a glorious whole."
- Josh Heggen

"excellent prose poems with a tight rhythmic backbone"
- Nathan Hoks, author of Reveilles

Click below to listen to the Preface and the title poem:


A Cloud of Witnesses


January, 2011: A Cloud of Witnesses is on the SPD Poetry bestseller lists for November (#4) and December (#16).

November 11, 2010: My translation of Alejandra Pizarnik's "Caminos del espejo" appears in the new issue of Mantis.

April, 2010: My translations of poems by Alejandra Pizarnik appear in 1913: A Journal of Forms. Visit the journal's site.

March 25, 2010: My translation of sections 1-12 of Alejandra Pizarnik's book-length sequence Tree of Diana (Arbol de Diana) appears in the online journal Octopus. Have a look.

March 15, 2010: My translations of two early poems by Alejandra Pizarnik appear in the online journal Harp & Altar. I hope you'll have a look.

Alejandra Pizarnik was born in Buenos Aires in 1936. She studied philosophy and literature at the University of Buenos Aires and, later, pursued interests in painting and religion. Her books include the poetry collections Works and Nights, Extraction of the Stone of Folly, and The Musical Inferno, as well as the prose work The Bloody Countess. She died in 1972 of a drug overdose.

December 11, 2009: My translation of Luis Felipe Fabre's "Season in Hell" appears in the current issue of Soundings, a political magazine in the UK.

August 7, 2009: I'm thrilled to announce that my collection of poems, A Cloud of Witnesses, will be published by Quale Press in the second half of 2010. Excerpts from the book can be found online here: "A Cloud of Witnesses" in In Posse; "A First Encounter" in Diagram; "A Paradise of Old Hats" in No Tell Motel; Three Poems in the Horseless Press Review

March 26, 2009: Michael Kimball has written my life story on a postcard. Read it on his website.

March 9, 2009: The new issue of Keyhole, edited by William Walsh, contains new poems by me, poems by Margaret, and plenty of other good stuff.

January 18, 2009: Cultural Society now features seven sections from The Pied Machine, a series I'm writing. Each poem takes its diction from Wallace Stevens. I hope you'll have a look.

December 21, 2008: Two of my poems appear in the latest issue of Third Coast. Read all about it here.

July 21, 2008: Achiote Press has just published The moon ain't nothing but a broken dish, my translation of poems by Luis Felipe Fabre. Read all about it here.

May 13, 2008: My essay "Of Lyric Poetry" has just been published in Jacket.