KSE #89, NEXT EXIT: EIGHT, featuring New Mexico’s Hosho McCreesh and Oklahoma’s Caleb Puckett has been out for a few weeks and we’ve already moved 1/3 of the printing, so act now if you’d like a copy.
Hosho McCreesh writes beautifully about his home state of New Mexico—-if there is any poet out there who is at one with the place he or she calls home, it is McCreesh. I’m reminded of the best work of Gary Snyder in the combination of particulars and the spiritual quality of the land, and I’m also reminded of the great but underrated New Mexico poet Judson Crews, but ultimately Hosho McCreesh has his own instantly recognizable style.
From Tulsa, Oklahoma, Caleb Puckett is a new addition to the KSE stable of poets, and I felt that any NEXT EXIT chapbook dealing with the American Southwest needed Puckett’s unique perspective and voice. He is a master of language tone and texture, and he possesses that unique Oklahoma sense of humor (I lived there for six years) seen in Oklahomans as diverse as Gary Busey, the late great Will Rogers, and The Flaming Lips. His seven new poems in this collection show an incredibly diverse stylistic palette—one moment gushing with a Ginsberg-like flow, the next one channelling a surrealist Spoon River worthy of James Tate. Often, writers capable of the kind of verbal gymnastics Puckett seems to spin so effortlessly wind up being all style and no substance, but Puckett’s work has blood flowing through its veins, it grows out of the absurdity of the human condition and of the societies we’ve constructed, but the author is part of that same world…he is our neighbor.
Although NEXT EXIT: EIGHT contains only 11 poems, you will close the book feeling completely satisfied. The American Southwest—-two state united by Route 66—-is viewed through two VERY different lenses.
Both of these gentlemen are in-demand writers, and I thank them for taking the time to compose all-new material for Kendra Steiner Editions. Hosho McCreesh has a chapbook from Bottle of Smoke Press coming out any day now, entitled MARCHING UNABASHED INTO THE WEEPING, SEARING SUN… (not yet available, but check out the BOS website at http://www.bospress.net/order.html ). Caleb Puckett’s most recent offering is the poetry chapbook DESERTIONS, published by Plan B. Press, available from Plan B’s website: http://planbpress.com/puckettdesertions.html . It’s hard to pull of being both quirky and real, but Puckett is an accomplished tightrope walker, and I’ve spent many a thoughtful and enjoyable hour with my copy of DESERTIONS.
NE8 is an edition of 76 copies. As always, it’s $4 postpaid in the US—-or any 3 different KSE chapbooks for $10 postpaid. Check (or well-concealed cash) to Bill Shute, 8141-B Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas, 78233. Overseas, chapbooks are $5 each postpaid—-write and request a paypal invoice.
Our next edition of NEXT EXIT will appear in July 2008. Stay tuned.