FINALIST FOR THE RILKE PRIZE
For nearly four decades Christopher Howell has so ably been marrying the miraculous to the mundane; the invisible world to the here-before-our-eyes; the wacky to the expectable; the meditative to the pratfall-prone; the immediate to the ghost-ridden; and the mirthful to the elegiacand marrying them with authority.”
Albert Goldbarth, author of Saving Lives
"Gaze leads its reader through a concatenation of perspectives to a simultaneously mournful and hopeful place. It leaves us with that indescribable feeling of interconnectedness that sometimes emerges from great literature wherein the particular, deeply meditated upon, expands into the universal and makes us more than ourselves."
Ryan Siemers, Quarterly West
"These are beautiful crow-lit lyric poems singed with memory, delivered in an off-hand minor chord, touched by the surreal and the small, that manages to distill loss and still deliver a fierce joy."
Mark Wagenaar, 32poems
From the Back Cover
PRAISE FOR GAZE
The word gaze works two sides of the street. The book, Gaze, works those two sides, their common surface, the underside of that surface, and the liminal space in between. There is almost no contemporary poetry I can think of capable of taking me where Howell’s poetry takes me: not on a journey of distance but of perspective. These poems contain the essence of poetry, rational thought subverted into an exquisite and unexpected new logic. In this collection, Howell refreshes the archetypes of home, family, country, and soul, imbuing them with twenty-first century pleasures, dangers, and complexities. Orphic, Miltonic, Rilkean, Howell is the poet I turn to when poetry eludes me, when I cannot remember my dreams, when I fail to love our human frailties.”
Kathy Fagan, author of Lip and Moving & St Rage
In his extraordinary new book, Christopher Howell uses, among others, the motif of the traveler to investigate the imaginative terrain where the afterlife, the other life, and the inner life find a singular life. What a range of emotions, and what a rightness of tone he can work into a poem. There is an honest ease in his voice and a clarity in his gaze that allows him to range through human time, from the freshness of childhood to the thrills and fears of adolescence to the recognitions of age and loss, playful, melancholic, elegiac and stoic by turns. He blends the ordinary and the fabulous the way a great guitar player bends and stretches a note without missing a beat.”
Greg Pape, author of American Flamingo and Sunflower Facing the Sun
PRAISE FOR CHRISTOPHER HOWELL
Christopher Howell’s books are at eye-level on my nearest shelf, so I can reach them when poems are wanted to bring the soul to in its own silvery light where it often wakes weeping and trembling.”
Michael Heffernan, author of The Night Breeze Off The Ocean
An exceptional voice and talent, one that enriches all of us writing and reading poetry in these times.”
Christopher Buckley, author ofWhite Shirt and Rolling the Bones
Christopher Howell is the author of nine collections of poems, most recently Dreamless and Possible: Poems New and Selected (2010). Howell teaches at Eastern Washington University and lives in Spokane.
Cover design: Hopkins/Baumann
Cover art: David Luckert