In this, his sixth collection of poetry, Gaylord Brewer resumes his study of the maimed and the merciful. From the sultry, atavistic allure of Central America to the routine blessings of rural domestic life, these apologias, both grotesque and tender, map a migration. Failed horoscopes and thoroughbreds that won’t stud. Missed funerals, bone collections, exotic bird sightings. The exhibitionist beside his freezer of meats. The faux pas of the martini glass by the campfire. Somebody, somewhere, has some explaining to do.
Praise for Let Me Explain
Brewer’s narrators fling themselves at life, but embrace as much zest for the fall as for when life catches them and pulls them in. They are murderers, lovers, and family men, but all of them fight against an inherent solitude in order to tell their stories. Their tales are tight with a coil of danger, but also bluntly honest on how to conquer a world both savage and gentle. The effect is often noir in nature, as if these voices belong to detectives examining all earth’s improprieties, or the criminals that commit them. The poems, however, are not seedy, but instead gorgeous in their language and pulse.
He’s a rare bird, really, a poet of both wit and compassion.
Those who shun security and conventionality will appreciate Brewer’s divining rod for the contrary and his need to document it.
While his narrators rarely forget their ultimate fate, they are blessed with insight enough to admire the exquisite properties of the very waters that drown them. Brewer is a singular talent.