Review: Glean, by Joshua Kryah

My review of Glean is in this month’s Bookslut:

Prior to Joshua Kryah’s first book of poems, Glean, only one poet in the language had thought to include both “purblind” and “unbloom” in a single work. But Kryah’s opening poem, “Called Back, Called Back,” invokes Hardy’s “Hap” (glancing too at “Channel Firing”) only to point up how starkly their interests diverge. “Hap” finds the universe’s indifference oddly unmanning, a sort of cosmic jujitsu that paradoxically short-circuits one’s ability to endure suffering. Kryah, however, pursues an alternate view: God’s apparent indifference is the ground of faith:

Acquit me, make me
purblind, unbloomed, a thing that,

when roused,
remains dormant, unused, none
among many.

Who opens a book of poems asking to be made unbloomed? Finding themselves caught “between almost and already,” Kryah’s poems mercilessly and lovingly work at a language that would be suitable to such an acquittal, that would be an avenue for redemption.

Read the whole thing!

For a review concurring in part, see Richard Jeffrey Newman at the Great American Pinup, also published yesterday.  (He loves the poems, but is less sympathetic to Kryah’s kenotic vision.)

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