Tuesday, February 24, 2009
The Underside of Leaves
Yesterday, my sophomores were in the computer lab working on a debate project and so I haphazardly grabbed a poetry book from my desk - one that I hadn't read yet. I grabbed The Underside of Leaves by Joseph Hutchison (he recently came to Pomona to do a poetry reading and the school library purchased a few of his books - they are right now sitting in my classroom so I can sift through them). I started it in the computer lab and then finished it after I took it home last night. I was completely floored. It was wonderful. Rarely do I ever start a book and then finish it the same day. I could not put it down.
Hutchison has a powerful command over language. I would go so far as to say he is an expert. His poetry speaks not only to literary experts and MFA Graduates, but to the common reader; the reader who may not know all that much about poetry. His poems are simple, but deep.
My favorite from the collection is "Demosthenes, Dying, Addresses His Dead Lover." I also enjoyed "Artichoke" - a short, simple poem from the collection. It is definitely worth a read - pick it up, you won't be sorry.