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ISBN: 978-1-937854-25-6
Categories Poetry

Far From Sudden

Publication Date: March 2013


At only 37, Brent Goodman nearly died in the midst of April NaPoWriMo 2009. Spanning three decades, every poem in Far From Sudden radiates out from this bewildering experience, casting a luminous vantage across the poet’s past, present, and beyond.


Memory and mortality are disquieting muses in Brent Goodman’s Far From Sudden. The first assaults the mind with the knowledge ‘every life / must move one sullen photograph at a time’; the other dispirits the body with the existential truth: ‘I am this quiet / passenger in my own vehicle.’ But from the poetry of pain and solitude come recovery, gratitude and the blissful state of surrender. Goodman weaves light into darkness gloriously, like prayer into marrow.

– Rigoberto González

Goodman’s poems are marvelously realized into crisp and compressed lyrics not easily forgotten. Far From Sudden frequently surprises, even as we are seduced by sights and sounds of the ordinary animated with astonishing and eloquent force.

– Aimee Nezhukumatathil

These poems are heart-haunted. Cardiac telemetry is the central metaphor for his poetic quest that captures the dance between desire and death, and the eroticism (‘I like it / when our wildest parts are glistening’) is made more urgent because of the awareness of mortality (‘Hearses headlights always on’). Between gravity and trajectory, Goodman’s poems are crushingly immediate – as compelling as cave drawings, as awe-inspiring and elegant as star maps.

-Patrick Lawler

About the Author

Brent Goodman

Brent Goodman's debut poetry collection The Brother Swimming Beneath Me (2009) was a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award and a Thom Gunn Award. His next book with Black Lawrence Press, Far From Sudden, is forthcoming in 2012. A recipient of two Wisconsin Arts Board Fellowships, his work has appeared in Poetry, Diode, Green Mountains Review, Puerto Del Sol, The Beloit Poetry Journal, Pank, Devil's Lake, and elsewhere. Brent lives in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, where he's a professional copywriter, assistant editor for the online journal Anti-, and a certified Reiki Master teacher/practitioner.

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