I’m getting excited about tonight’s reading at Fergie’s Pub, the last one I’ll be doing for awhile. Some nice reviews have started to roll in the last couple weeks. Thought I’d share a few excerpts.
What Reviewers Are Saying about VELVET RODEO
Velvet Rodeo, by Philadelphia poet Kelly McQuain is clearly a winner. These are well-crafted poems with surprises, narrative twists, and a rich use of vocabulary. Several themes predominate in McQuain’s work. The most important is his origins: growing up in rural West Virginia…. [T]he strongest of all the poems in the collection, called “Creation Myth”… describes the early lives of both his father and mother. Extraordinary philosophical questions are thrown at the image of the mother: “How to separate the cosmic egg? Separate the raw from the cooked?” Like his son, the father in the poem was also an artist, if on the fringes of the creative world. In an almost rhythmical ending the poet recognizes the enormous debt to his parents, knowing he can never repay them.” — Dan Evans, “Gay Presses: Alive and Thriving”, The Fire Island Tide, May 23, 2014.
Velvet Rodeo “engender[s] camaraderie among individuals who love lauding language and its possibilities.” – Joseph Myers, “Poetic License”, South Philly Review, June 5, 2014. http://www.southphillyreview.com/news/lifestyles/McQuain_touting_Velvet_Rodeo_poems-261974161.html
VELVET RODEO by Kelly McQuain is the recent winner of the Bloom Chapbook Prize, judged by poet C. Dale Young who wrote of it: “‘The tongue I try to master / is a sticky one, forked and full of tricks,’ is the opening of a poem in Velvet Rodeo, and it becomes a point of return for the collection. These poems understand that to tell the truth, one must lie, play tricks, and even dare to say the unbelievable. Careful and exacting, these poems exact a price from a reader. They linger with you long after you have finished reading them.”