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Why I Believe in Ghosts

Why I Believe in Ghosts by Neil Grill 1646623967 9781646623969
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ISBN: 1646623967

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To reclaim your birth-right, you have to mingle with ghosts. Thats what I learned from Neil Grills stunning new collection, Why I Believe in Ghosts, which embodies the old adage; Its never too late. Why leave incomplete what matters most, when youre still here, when youve met that "old brawler," Death, "a journeyman club fighter... feinting with his left, hitting me hard with his right..." and won, at least for now. This poet wakes up and starts writing again after thirty years doing other things. Every one who told him no, who called him names, who steered him away from himself, is met here in poems with compassion and unsparing honesty. This is a poet in love with life, who stops to watch through a silver chainlink fence, children playing. "I didnt want to leave them. I didnt want to leave this world." Faithless, faithful, kind, cruel, heedless, careful, he admits to his own dichotomies in poems, unvarnished, and more valuable for everything they refuse to hide, ready to take back this late in the game, what always belonged to him...his voice.

-Frances Richey

We inhabit our histories, yet, as they unfold, the facts of autobiography translate to the mysteries of memoir-or to poetry. In this collection, Neil Grill asks the universal question that inhabits all three modes of writing: Who am I? He asks: Who is Me-the Me of memory, of wishes, dreams? Who is the Me in the stories of my life? Which stories are told over and over? Which might never be told? Both kinds are stories Neil Grill shares with us in a revelatory self-portrait as unique, yet as mysteriously universal, as our own.

-Bo Niles

In Why I Believe in Ghosts, Neil Grill, the kind of 80-year old who brings binoculars to the Philharmonics upper reaches just to see "the breadth, the panorama," takes the long view of his own life, and "starts again," to write poems. Letting his confiding, narrative gaze fall now on his father, now his mother, now on his younger self stepping out of a prescribed life to make a happier one, these poems commune with the living presence of a bruising, imperfect parental love, and on an intentional life with its own set of regrets, acceptances and joys. They are spoken by a poet whose quest for self-knowledge and empathy focusses so candidly on what it means to be a human being that he can say, "every poem I write now is a late poem." The guy with the binoculars? Hes also a fellow traveler, and youll want to see what hes found.

-Jessica Greenbaum

Author: Neil Grill

Language: English

Binding: Paperback

Pages: 44

Publisher: Finishing Line Press

Publication Date: 2021-01-01

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