"Folks, get into Geffrey Davis," says Muzzle magazine (online) of the most recent winner of the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize. Davis was chosen for Muzzle's "30 Under 30" for his poem "What I Mean When I Say Elijah-Man," from his Poulin Prize-winning manuscript Revising the Storm. While the word "masculine" has long been associated with that which is "muscular, rigid, strong, recluse, stubborn, and fisted," Muzzle speaks on the "softness" of masculinity, which is represented in Davis’ poetry: "Geffrey Davis’ work takes that off and splits it open, shows us the soft cotton that makes the word muscular, the tender, purple flesh it takes to make the word strong possible. Geffrey’s work tackles manhood, fatherhood, sonhood... love, and sexuality with a boxer’s hands: firm and weathered, capable of so much violence and wreckage, but purposefully gentle and fond when handling our fragile humanity." Calling Davis a "master of the turn," Muzzle deems the poet an "honest voice... able to guide us patiently through the nature of work... to lead us to where we want to go, where he wants us to go." “I learned to cry like that, as if I could sprain the heart, the body hurting its way out. But that morning my mind snuck back to the nights he took paychecks and split, sometimes for weeks, his head and body humming for dope, his wife and kids suspended by the boundlessness of waiting.” -from “What I Mean When I Say Elijah-Man” Garnering much attention for his new collection of poems, Davis also recently won the 2013 Dogwood Award for his poem “What We Set in Motion,” and Sycamore Review's Wabash Poetry Prize for “What I Mean When I Say Elijah-Man,” selected by Nikki Finney. Dogwood poetry judge Adrian Matejka calls "What We Set in Motion" an "ambitious and rangy poem that manages to be both muscular and delicate... reminiscent of James Wright." According to Sycamore Review, "What I Mean When I Say Elijah-Man" "dares to entwine issues of family and fealty with those of faith." Both poems are from Revising the Storm, which will be published by BOA in its Spring 2014 season. "...Soon you will be able to carry the raw workings of Geffrey around in your pocket," says Muzzle. "This man is a wonder of strength and delicacy, someone that we will watch for years as he muscles his way to the venerable and quiet." Click here to read the entire post from Muzzle. For more on Geffrey Davis, visit www.geffreydavis.com, or the poet's Facebook page.
- Categories: Uncategorized