- Paperback: 16 pages
- Publisher: Crisis Chronicles Press (2012)
- Language: English
- ASIN: B009094R5Q
- Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,855,837 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Other Guy Paperback – 2012
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The Amazon Book Review
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Top Customer Reviews
Allen writes with a syllabic richness that reminds me of the British objectivist Basil Bunting. In the first poem, for instance, "Green's Serration," we find dense, highly charged lines such as "Smashing a sea glass bong / against thin white walls / he listens as minutes / bead in sharp blue / and green jagged ring stone." The density of these lines have a Teutonic, Old English feel to them. One imagines a modern day Beowulf wrestling Grendels of internal despair.Read more ›
Allen’s voice lacks any of the preciosity and indirectness that bedevils so many other poets. I initially wrote that it was “Simple, supple, and succinct,” but alliterative games like that don’t do these poems justice: they succeed in part by avoiding such stuff. Like their subjects, they seem to have been stripped clean of superfluous decoration by tragedy and hard living. Every line is crystal clear and as hard as crystal, too:
his case worker,
that livid nose
like a frozen turkey's
--these and other lines recurred to me for days after reading them. Excellent verses overall, sad and unexpectedly genuine, detailing small failures and dead ends redeemed by the beauty in their telling.
These are poems that contaminate the conscience and cast a permanent glare on the soul's motions in the night and the day. A terribly aware consciousness produced these insinuating visions and one reads the words with the sense that each word is straining at the limit of its existence to communicate its intolerable and full freight of experience.
Something of a legend in Albany, John Allen restages his one-man-army-of-mercy extravagances and wanderings in lightful glimpses of the homeless, the addicted, the sick, the f---ed and the damned - real people living in a real world - the people Allen meets and struggles to help - their own lives opening out of this books pages to begin their new lives in the reader's mind - and soon - in the reader's lives as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
John Thomas Allen's poetry never fails to dizzy this reader with its always original detail, grimy or gorgeous. Read morePublished on November 16, 2013 by Donna Snyder
John Thomas Allen's work operates in our world, love it or hate it, with a sense of the grittiness, the tangibility of surrealism. Read morePublished on October 15, 2013 by Devoted Reader
According to David Shapiro, "Freud said to the young surrealists to beware of unconscious imagery, and Meyer Schapiro said even dreams were social. Read morePublished on July 24, 2013 by John Burroughs
I'm extremely impressed by John's surrealist poetry book. A young talented poet who shares his amazing imagination with the world, and causes an admiration for what he has done and... Read morePublished on July 7, 2013 by shahla
I came upon "The Other Guy" when I was browsing some of the poetry books on Amazon.com. Though not all the poems were to my taste, some of John Thomas Allen's poems are real... Read morePublished on February 3, 2013 by Vvvoom
THE OTHER GUY threads a slender, intuitive superstring through the cosmic landscape of the poet's concerns, some personal, some historical, all compelling, ranging from Dachau to... Read morePublished on November 14, 2012 by haselwood