"At times dreamlike, at times sharply rendered, as lapidarian as precious gems, these haunting poems by C. Mikal Oness resound with deft subtleties, fine wit, and striking imagery. In them, Oness confronts our collective desires and fears, our human quandaries, as he delves into the essence of both mundane and cosmic mysteries. Along the way , he explores longing, impermanence, the fragility of our human comforts, the elusiveness of art, and the transmutations that occur between nature and being, death and transcendence. Oness's poems echo the succinct and tantalizing conundrums of Anglo-Saxon riddles, the soul's yearning of Rumi, and the word-playing delight of Gertrude Stein. These poems are small treasures-rich in nuance and song, emotionally complex, resonant and lasting." -- Maurya Simon
"The spare, elegant poems in Water Becomes Bone confront with unusual clarity the joys and the anguish of living with others. The contradictions of this considered life-a son's affections and a son's rage, the bones moving gracefully under a child's skin and the bones of another child resting under the earth-are considered with honesty and with a wrenching beauty. These contradictions are sometimes resolved, sometimes not, but each is confronted with wonder, reverence and awe. Oness is a fisherman, and there are poems in this collection that will have anglers pulling on their waders. This book is like a clear pool you can cast into again and again; every poem is a keeper." -- Gary Young
About the Author
C. Mikal Oness is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the University of Missouri. His work has appeared in The Iowa Review, Shenandoah, The Colorado Review, The Bloomsbury Review, Cutbank, and elsewhere. Among his awards are the Academy of American Poets Prize, the Mahan Poetry Prize, and the Mary Roberts Rinehart Award from George Mason University. He has a limited edition chapbook, Impossible Fires,from Aureole Press, another, Runian, from Bergamot Press, and a collection of poetry, Husks, from Brandenburg Press. He is the founding editor of Sutton Hoo Press, and currently teaches creative writing, world literature, and studies in the book at the University of Wisconsin in LaCrosse.