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The Singers I Prefer
Christian Barter; Sydney Lea, fwd.

2005 • 88 pp. 6 x 9 1/2"

$14.00 Paperback, 978-0-9723045-4-2

Trained as a musician and composer, Barter’s poems are driven by the rhythm and lyricism, punctuated with occasional dissonances that startle the reader with profound perceptions hidden within deceptively straightforward “melodies.” Whether exploring the misadventures of youth or the petty defeats of encroaching middle age, Barter evokes the bittersweet feeling of being “sad in the deep-sweet way/that gods are sad for all that will/never be.”

Reviews / Endorsements

“...that indefinable gift to howl in pain at the moon even as the virtuosity and beauty of the howling indicate the player’s love of life. One of the most impressive debuts I know.”—Sydney Lea

From the Book:

Can you love the dawn and hate the day? I do.
“Addicted to the beginnings of relationships,”
as I've been told. And told. And told. The new
light looks as something else when it first hits,
something more like Catherine standing up
across a strangered room, that promising look
she had before the promises, still stuck
with sweetness to her face in my notebook
of pre-day ecstasies. I love the feel
of gray seeping into black-what it represents:
the casting-out that could occur-and the real,
truant world opening, before it grows dense
with light and the need for endings, setting free
that inkling some lasting love might come to me. “Snakeskin Stilettos”
Eight years old, you understand
these shoes are different.
Not for nothing
has your mother wrapped them in paper
shut them into their box, set them
at the very back of the wardrobe.

From “Can you”

Christian Barter was born and raised in rural Maine. He received a B.A. from Bates College, in music composition, and an M.F.A in Writing from Vermont College. He supervises a trail crew in Bar Harbor, Maine, doing dry stone masonry, tree work, and wild-land firefighting. Christian's poems have appeared in a number of periodicals, including The Georgia Review, North American Review, American Scholar and Notre Dame Review. He has received residency fellowships from the Kimmel Harding Nelson Foundation and the Espy Foundation.

Fri, 6 Jul 2018 13:11:24 -0500