poems from the bright days
and dark nights of the soul
This thirty-poem collection is an eclectic mix of light and dark, playful and spiritual, lyric and narrative free verse. In an intricate dance of sound play, it explores how our perceptions shape our interactions with the world. Here child heroes emerge on playgrounds and in chicken coops, teens grapple with grief and taste first love, adults waver between isolation and engaged connection. It is a book about creative life, our capacity to wound and heal, and the unlikely places we find love, beauty, and grace.
“In Muddy-Fingered Midnights, Garver seamlessly integrates unpredictable rhyme and alliteration to undergird the themes and strange beauty of these poems. The collection explores moments of cowardice and melting purity, ‘my only fruit / a cool ooze / that bubbles up / on blistering days,’ yet holds strongly onto faith as much as ‘Yankee girl grit.’ Even in dark times that are ‘glassy with misery,’ there’s a hidden reflection in the pane: hope.”
—Jessica Bell, co-founder of Vine Leaves Literary Journal and author of Fabric, semi-finalist, Goodreads Readers’ Choice Awards 2012: Best Poetry.
The title comes from the final piece in the collection, "A Writer's Parable," which explores fear in the creative process, using imagery from the parable of the talents in Matthew 25 (the one where the cowardly servant buries his piece of gold in the ground rather than take a risk and invest it like his faithful co-workers do).
The collection includes a number of all-new pieces, plus previously published favorites that appeared in international literary journals. About 2/3 of the poems are general topics, a 1/3 have spiritual themes. I love using sound-play, but don't use traditional forms. Within free verse, rhythms emerge organically and rhyming is nearly always inside lines rather than at the ends.
Here are a few sample pieces:
Affliction, about the writing life
Storm Shelter, rom-dram fiction-in-verse
Not Quite Away, experimental narrative poem
Fun and soulful, dark and bright, Muddy-Fingered Midnights has a little something for everyone in small, bite-sized pieces.
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Or get the paperback for $6.50 from CreateSpace, Amazon
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