“‘When a nation goes down or a society perishes, one condition can always be found—they forgot where they came from,’ cautioned Chicago icon Carl Sandburg, whose acute historical consciousness pervades this timely anthology. From the stockyard to the speakeasy, the steakhouse to the flophouse, the top of the Hancock tower to the thirteenth floor of an east-side tenement, what this eclectic gathering of poets shares is a commitment to honoring Chicago’s roots. Infused with a passion beyond the reach of prose, here is an ‘intimate ethnography’—part torch song, part folk song, part ballad, part dirge—of a city both ‘on the make’ and ‘on the take.’”—Suzanne Buffam, author, The Irrationalist
“A city like Chicago deserves an anthology of this scope: bursting with the life lived on the streets in the Loop and alive with childhood memories as seen from the city’s neighborhood windows. Ryan Van Cleave has collected a prodigious swath of poems from writers commemorating their Chicago, a city as big in our imaginations as it is from the view at Promontory Point Park.”—Joshua Marie Wilkinson, author, Selenography
About the Author
Ryan G. Van Cleave is the author, coauthor, editor, or coeditor of nineteen books including poetry, young adult fiction, and nonfiction. With Virgil Suárez, he is the editor of the poetry anthologies Red, White, and Blues: Poets on the Promise of America (Iowa, 2004), Vespers: Contemporary American Poems of Religion and Spirituality (Iowa, 2003), Like Thunder: Poets Respond to Violence in America (Iowa, 2002), and American Diaspora: Poetry of Displacement (Iowa, 2001).