“I think most contemporary poets occupy a fairly humble place in the universe, that we have few Byronic illusions about our fame. The act of reading my poems to an audience will always be a bit scary.”
These poems often resist the reader in the same way his speaker resists his father, but the book’s exploration of such distance creates a closeness between the reader and the poems, and the speaker and his father, that’s almost too much to bear.
Free Union is much more than a small Virginia town. It is also the choice involved; the choice to go back to the land, the choice to settle with a partner, father children, and find both comfort and discomfort in the God these pages depict.
Christian Anton Gerard’s first book of poems is Wilmot Here, Collect For Stella (WordTech, 2014). He’s the recipient of the 2013 Iron Horse Literary Review’s Discovered Voices Award, Pushcart Prize nominations, scholarships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and an Academy of American Poets Prize. Gerard’s recent poems appear in storySouth, Post Road, Redivider, Pank, Orion, Smartish Pace, B-O-D-Y, Cutthroat, and The Journal. He currently lives in Fort Smith, AR, where he’s an Assistant Professor of English, Rhetoric, and Writing at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith. Visit Christian on the web at www.christianantongerard.com.