“Velvet Rodeo” by Kelly McQuain (Reviewed)

Gratitude for the coverage by Valerie Fox for Velvet Rodeo! #poetry #VelvetRodeo

Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets

Velvet Rodeo by Kelly McQuain Velvet Rodeo by Kelly McQuain

Velvet Rodeo
by Kelly McQuain
Bloom chapbook series
2013

Reviewed by Valerie Fox.

Velvet Rodeo won the 2013 Bloom chapbook contest. It was selected by C. Dale Young. For more information, visit http://bloomliteraryjournal.org.

Coming of age, finding identity, negotiating family relationships; these themes are all here, explored through Kelly McQuain’s characteristic precise description and formal attentiveness.

“Creation Myth” is a sweeping and ambitious exploration of a time and a place. We can see the narrator’s young parents as they court, and the young poet himself “drawing pictures of Superman/on the back of empty envelopes” in his small town West Virginia church.  McQuain’s observations of his small town beginnings put me in mind of seeing people through the Trailways bus windows when I was coming or leaving home during my own college years. There’s a respect for family here, a sensitivity for how even those (like…

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