Delighted to welcome the talent that is Ricky Ray to the family. His chapbook 'The Sound of the Earth Singing to Herself' will be published in Autumn 2020.
It is an incredibly moving collection, which seems to start conversations about disability and pain which I am not currently seeing as properly represented in poetry and in publishing in general.
This chapbook is the result of about two years' worth of writing. The themes include explorations of 1) ecological awareness, 2) a strange and difficult childhood, 3) the human/non-human bond, 4) mortality in light of disability and 5) the music of thought and language.
The Sound of the Earth Singing to Herself is a many-headed chapbook. It seeks to describe the way the Earth is a many-voiced chorus singing through all creatures and creations that comprise her wild blue orb.
It forefronts Earth as the primary being, the one living us as much as we are living her. And in that life, as known to me, this chapbook covers ecological awareness, a strange and difficult childhood, the all-important interplay between human and non-human species, the mortality of self and those dearest to us, and beauty as a form of heartbreak that both darkens the blood and sings it.
More about Ricky:
An award-winning poet with 20 years of experience writing, performing and editing poetry, Ricky Ray was born in Florida and educated at Columbia University. He is author of Fealty (Diode Editions, 2019), a finalist for the Best Book Award, and the founding editor of Rascal: A Journal of Ecology, Literature and Art. His awards include the Cormac McCarthy Prize, the Ron McFarland Poetry Prize, the Fortnight Poetry Prize, and a Whisper River Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared widely in periodicals and anthologies, including The American Scholar, The Matador Review, Amaryllis, Scintilla and Fugue.
Pulitzer laureate Claudia Emerson lauded his work for its “inventiveness, lyricism and mystery,” and said, “I like the way he plays with memory and finally catches memory off its guard.” MacArthur Fellow Eleanor Wilner cited his “wonderfully protean imagination, one thing turning into another, everything loaning life and motion to the next.” Best American Poetry editor David Lehman praised his “marvelous verse-making skill” and said “the breath of his utterances is remarkable.”
Keep an eye out for this 2020 poet!