Poetry. Dan Beachy-Quick's ARROWS rests in the palm of the hand like a shard of ancient pottery, caressing antiquity into the present, reminding us of the impossibility of separating ourselves from outdated ways of knowing. Here, in increments, we are enchanted by the humming of bees and the vibrating strings of lyre and bow. Arrows, eros, a rose: a hidden homonym impels these poems, just as those echoes enfold the overlaps of meanings they are helpless to tease apart. 'Word by word the voice works in what it wishes, ' the poet writes. Through the winging and winding of violence, love and beauty, these poems pull and elongate various forms of harm. Yet, a shadow question haunts the book: Might some means of recovery be borne out of harm itself? Poems of desire and hurt, care and prayer answer in the affirmative, turning wound into song. In other words, within these covers, something entirely new and miraculous is offered the reader.
About the Author
Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of six books of poetry, six chapbooks (two in collaboration with Srikanth Reddy), and two prose collections, as well as criticism and fiction. His work has won the Colorado Book Award, and has been a finalist for the William Carlos Williams Prize, and the PEN/USA Literary Award in Poetry, and included on the Best American Poetry anthology. He is the recipient of a Lannan Foundation residency, and has taught at the Iowa Writer’s Workshop. He was one of two Monfort Professors at CSU for 2013-2015, and his work has been supported by the Woodberry Poetry Room at Harvard University and the Guggenheim Foundation. He is a University Distinguished Teaching Scholar at Colorado State University, where he serves as assistant chair of the English Department and teaches in the MFA Program in Creative Writing.
“A new collection from Dan Beachy-Quick is always an event. In Arrows, Beachy-Quick presents plate after plate from the tiniest, most exquisite of feasts: it’s as if, since ‘clarity / will not ever / cohere,’ Beachy-Quick has opted for a precision that mimics clarity. Arrows wears Beachy-Quick’s trademark classicism lightly, as in ‘Theseus’s Ship,’ which, used, discarded, abandoned, reduces to a pile of boards, only to be rebuilt again and again by children. Beachy-Quick’s chief concern in Arrows is the relationship between love and ‘the made thing’—the ship, the child, the poem, the dream, the myth. What remains in the mind of the reader is a sense of gentle weight beneath a ‘honey-heavy portable heaven,’ ‘love’s honey loan’ adrift like ghosts in the violence of this modern world.”
“How does mind find a way out of itself? Are words arrows? And if they are, in which direction do they fly as they Pierce the heart to make it sing. In Dan Beachy-Quick’s wondrous new poems, spirit is aimed at matter in an inexhaustible, urgent quest for meaning and the consequence of meaning. Slow down. Find a quiet place. Read this book. It will not give you hope so much as comfort for your sorrow.”
— Ann Lauterbach
“Dan Beachy-Quick’s new book of meditative lyrics, Arrows, is a bag of gems—intricate, chiseled architectures of light—whose smallness belies their generosities of heart and mind. But just as these poems give us facets to provoke, arouse, awaken, delineate the unsaid, so too their music gives them an arrowing elusiveness, faster than prose, an eros to ‘bind us,’ in its passing, to what we cannot know, to loosen ‘the little knots of nerves called thought.’ Such loosening is everywhere here, as are nerves. Insight abounds, ever indebted the vitality of paradox, dialogue, transformation, to suggest a greater sense of participation and engagement, a less dogmatic ethics akin to listening. In empathic yearning, song ‘refuses the object’s / indifference and makes it ask to what it belongs.’ In a new ecology, each belongs to none and every. In the sparrow’s song, a call to ‘no one who is not alone.’ A deeply wise and beautiful book.”
— Bruce Bond