Some poems make it their business to hate the world. Scott Beal’s do not though they can rage and grieve. In fact, these poems are the world, this book a treasure trove where nothing is beside the point–not the weird or the luscious, not the strange or familiar, not the comic or the tender. All is intricately cross-hatched and surprising in language, in the way a mind moves. This poet takes us “into the dream and the bite….” And true, maybe “the brain is a fizzy instrument/in night’s open lab” but that belies the scary grounding precision involved. Look away, then back. And welcome this work.
–Marianne Boruch, author of The Book of Hours, winner of the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award
Scott Beal doesn’t just write poems. What he does is create a richly-colored world through poetry, one in which a toy sword wants to be a real one, a poem that’s had too much beer gives the reader a second-hand buzz, women give birth to cork babies (they float better than the real ones), and snails share a love that makes the Romeo and Juliet story look like a trip to the mall. Who wouldn’t want to live in such a world? I wish I could—oh, wait, I can! These poems open that door for me every time.
–David Kirby, author of A Wilderness of Monkeys