Al Nyhart and Lee Robison
Reading & Signing
The Man Himself and Have
Tuesday, February 4th @ 7pm
Al Nyhart received an MFA from the University of Montana and has been a painting contractor for over 40 years. His poetry has appeared in Berkeley Poetry Review, Big Sky Journal, Bright Bones: Contemporary Montana Writing, Exquisite Corpse, Great River Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Whiskey Island, Puerto del Sol, William and Mary Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Laurel Review and elsewhere. He lives with his wife Cheryl in White Sulphur Springs, Montana.
"The edges of Al Nyhart’s work cut and scrape against the lining of the heart, with poems that mark the behaviors of “the only animal who refuses to be what he is.” All the while, and with gorgeous clarity and tenderness, the work arrows toward freedom. Though they have traveled great distances, the poems land with impeccable timing and musical control. Here you will find, in Nyhart’s words, 'the way back as becoming.'" —David Keplinger, author of Another City
"Al Nyhart loves the world in all its savage splendor. Brutality and beauty co-exist in these stubborn-hearted poems spoken by and for a chorus of voices, all of them, in the poet’s own words, 'waiting for reality to open.'" —Colleen Morton Busch, author of Fire Monks: Zen Mind Meets Wildfire
"A powerful restlessness propels Al Nyhart’s debut; 'we move quickly as bodies must in war' he explains, leading us through time and history, through the Midwest, Vietnam, San Francisco, and finally Montana, this poet most at home 'where the wind lives.' A stunning portrait, The Man Himself remains on the edge: of 'the lost highway' or 'a continent/where the blue whales rise & fall,' of breakdown or breakthrough, self-destruction or salvation, tears or tenderness." —Jennifer Richter, author of No Acute Distress
David Robert Books recently announced the publication of Lee Robison’s collection of poetry Have.
Many of the poems in this book draw from Robison’s experiences growing up on a Montana ranch for their subject matter, imagery and themes. In the poem “Native,” ranch and farm imagery is contrasted with the imagery of Montana’s pre-history to ask to whom does this land belong, and what validates that possession. What is it that make this Valley, this River, these Mountains ours? In “Requiem for a Rancher” the question becomes what can an old rancher take with him when he dies? And just how much of him remains in the land and the landscape he formed in his lifetime?
Brian Kahn, author of Real Common Sense and host of Montana Public Radio’s Home Ground writes, “Robison’s words span cultures, place and time, ringing deep and true. These poems are rich in often hard sentiment, there is no sugared sentimentality. In Robison’s world, human life is hard, sometimes good.”
Robison is currently working on organizing a collection of his short fiction which he expects to finish sometime in the next year. He is also preparing a collection of his Haiku, which has a working title of Montana Zen—Cowboy Haiku.