alien buddha press

Sideways Blues – Irish Mountain & Beyond by Carl Kaucher

carl

By g emil reuter

Carl Kaucher is not a poet who walks. Kaucher is a wanderer. Often from the foot of Irish Mountain in Temple, Pennsylvania to the sometimes familiar, often forgotten urban landscapes of southeastern Pennsylvania. From city to dusty borough, to boroughs on the rebound. Kaucher wanders the main streets, back streets and alleyways, ever the observer, ever the recorder.

This collection of 32 poems bring the reader into the geography and characters who inhabit these places, many on the margins of life. A realist, Kaucher writes in the second stanza of the first poem:

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My altar is alternative form
meditated since before I was born.
Sometimes I dream of silence
and pray for it’s return
Life is far simpler than I know
when I let go of my self.
Drifting on an empty street
I am hoping to be filled with lost.
In giving away, I am not taking.
In living my way, I am not faking.
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He writes of the intercity bus station, of the dirty socks of damnation, of life along the railroad tracks, of street preachers and when he wanders into a neighborhood where his appearance is different than those who occupy the corner, they look upon each other suspiciously in the mirror of distrust.
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Kaucher tells of his love of nature while on a park bench in the opening stanza of 16:
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Far side of nowhere
under cool shade of pin oak
singing the park bench blues
to the cello sounds
of cicada whorls
that mesmerize me deep
to the sonic rhythm
sonata of August.
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This well-crafted collection pulsates with the rhythm of the hard side of life as in the 2nd and 3rd stanza of 4:
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Hard stepping down streets
rhythmic to a four count beat.
Passing through pools of dark
Carrion shadow- into my self
into meditation – emptiness.
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Thoughts come to pass as memory
Then fall into the gutter
to someday be washed away
down sewers into streams
and into the seas of dream.
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Recently Received Books

rec rec

We update this link on a regular basis. These publications are available to reviewers for possible publication at North of Oxford.

https://northofoxford.wordpress.com/2017/11/12/recently-received-books/

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Recently Received Books

Review copies of the following books are available 

Updated:  2/21/19

Poetry: I Can’t Talk About the Trees Without the Blood by Tiana Clark- University of Pittsburgh Press.

Poetry: Refuse by Julian Randal- University of Pittsburgh Press

Poetry: Bloodline by Michael A. Griffith – The Blue Nib

Poetry: Fake Lies by Jeffrey Cyphers Wright- Fell Swoop

Anthology: Humanity Edited by Eileen Tabios – Paloma Press

Poetry: One, Two, Three – Selected Hay(na)ku Poems by Eileen R. Tabios. (Paloma Press)

Poetry: Take Out Delivery by Paul Siegell. ( Spuyten Duyvil Press)

Novel: Mourning by Eduardo Halfon – Translated by Lisa Dillman and Daniel Hahn. (Bellevue Literary Press)

*Books no longer appearing on this list have been reviewed, were sent out for possible review. Those not picked up have been donated to local charitable thrift shops.