Protective Coloration / David Jibson

ProtectiveColorationCoverIn this splendid collection of engaging and unmistakably American poems, David Jibson manages to find beauty in utterly unexpected places: piled up on a back shelf at the Salvation Army Store, for example, or strung along the bedraggled length of the Ohio Turnpike—or perhaps in the lovely, tentative dance of a blind woman learning to walk with a white cane. Along with a faint echo of Ted Kooser or Billy Collins at their conversational best, you’ll be captivated by Jibson’s own irresistible voice: that of a witty, insightful observer of the astonishments that surround us.

Marilyn L. Taylor / Wisconsin Poet Laureate, Emerita

To read David Jibson’s poems is like leafing through a pile of photos of your life and suddenly rediscovering feelings and events you had forgotten or never knew. Each snapshot is replete with carefully selected images organized to create unity and fulfillment. His poems range from trivia to exotic, from people we recognize to those we would like to meet. Topics include science, religion, philosophy, history, music, art, and (the requisite for all good poetry) basic old-fashioned entertainment.

Lawrence W. Thomas / Founding Editor of Third Wednesday Magazine,
Honorary Chancellor, Poetry Society of Michigan








Protective Coloration

The Walking Stick is indistinguishable from his habitat,
as is the Dead Leaf Butterfly, the Pygmy Seahorse,
the Tawny Frog-mouth of Tasmania and the Giant Kelp-fish.

So it is with the poet of a certain age hidden in a corner booth
at the back of the cafe as quiet as any snowshoe hare,
as still as a heron among the reeds.

To Have and Have Not

In the balcony rows where the lovers sit
it’s not so far from heaven
where the beam from a projector
slices the darkness and we,
playing at Bogie and Bacall,
splash ourselves up on the screen,
an etching of a former world,
where we wish we could
live out our lives in two dimensions
in the deep shadows of a darkened theater,
the objects of every envy.

Available Now from Kelsay Books and Amazon:

KelsayAldrich amazonlogo

The Cottage / Laurence W. Thomas

From Finishing Line Press
The Cottage – by Laurence W. Thomas

We all have a dream, an idea of heaven on earth.  For Laurence Thomas the dream is of a simple idyllic life in a cabin in the woods or on a lake.  In The Cottage Thomas lives out his dream through his poems and we get to live the dream with him.  The poems are written with sensitivity and a special devotion to detail. The tranquil mood is reminiscent of the prose of Walden or the poetry of Gary Snyder or Wendell Berry but with Thomas’ own individual style and ear and eye for the sublime.  These are poems for a rainy Saturday, poems to be read slowly and savored like perfectly aged wine, hopefully on the porch of your own cottage, real or imagined.

–David Jibson, Editor of Third Wednesday, a literary arts journal

Thomas, I think, isn’t totally honest in this chapbook.  Maybe even subversive, which is in his nature and part of his charm.  On the surface he takes you to a cabin by the lakeside, opening the door to nostalgia like Yeats does in “Innisfree,” walking the paths through mushrooms, listening to the sermons of maples and Virginia creeper, rowing in the moonlight, celebrating Halloween with the lake’s residents.  He claims that cabin life carries him “away to places in the mind not possible to find in reality,” a theme echoed in “A Morning Walk Shows Changes” when he writes, “[O]n the breeze is a hint / of excitement as if just around the bend / or at the water’s edge I’ll find / some treasure . . . .”  Look deeper though, with the artist’s eye, the poet’s eye, and you’ll find the treasures taking different forms.  Quietly, sneakily, Thomas seems to be writing about poetry in a grand and disguised metaphor.  He leaves footprints for you to follow in the soft lakeside landscapes that lead to valuable and hospitable moments: “Everyone is invited to visit me here and take a dip into these refreshing waters.” You can dip into the beauty that surrounds a fishing cabin, a lake, and its environs or a dip into the pleasures of word and image and craft.  Thomas invites to both.

–Mark Tappmeyer, Professor of  English (ret.) Southwestern Baptist University, Bolivar, Missouri