And The Book Prize Winner Is...Rob Schlegel!
In his citation, Stephen Burt wrote: "There are verse-diaries, sequences given to dailiness, modern attempts to capture the frustrations and the delights of experience lesser writers might consider too ordinary to name; there are, that is, other books of poetry remotely like January Machine, but none of them feel like Schlegel’s arresting, sometimes seductive, sometimes bitter, always intelligent set. Not at all: Schlegel’s work—mostly in untitled quatrains, sometimes in epigrammatic shorter forms—belongs only and always to him and to our time. Part description, part abstract, always intelligent, sometimes awesomely strange, Schlegel’s carefulness qualifies and even improves the texture of an absurd and yet familiar 21st century everyday, lived outdoors and inland, between bathroom mirrors and surveillance screens, where “at the corner of Front/ and Main... a man stands/ partly contained within a cage” that is not quite his home, “when fear is a venue in states”; where patriotism is at once delusional and inescapable and comforting; where twentysomething anomie and adult responsibility show an uncanny ability to coexist; “where/ my fear of heroes somehow starts”; where “birds are holy/ because their bones fill with the same air/ into which they fall in order to fly.”
Rob Schlegel is also the author of The Lesser Fields, winner of the Colorado Prize for Poetry. A chapbook, Bloom, won the 2010 Laurel Review/GreenTower Press Chapbook Prize. Individual poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Boston Review, The Iowa Review, New American Writing, Poetry, The Volta, and elsewhere. With Daniel Poppick he co-edits The Catenary Press, a micropress dedicated to publishing long poems. Born in Portland, Oregon, he has lived most recently in Iowa, Montana, and Washington.
Rob will be visiting GrubStreet later this year for a reading, reception and to lead a craft class for members.