WAKING - a poetry collection by Ron Rash
Publisher Hub City Press, September 2011
Hub City Press, September 2011
Rooted in places like Watauga County, Goshen Creek, and Dismal Mountain, the
poems in Ron Rash’s fourth collection, "Waking", electrify dry counties and
tobacco fields until they sparkle with the rituals and traditions of
Southerners in the stir of their lives.
In his first book of poetry in nearly a decade, Rash leads his readers on a
Southern odyssey, full of a terse wit and a sense of the narrative so
authentic it will dazzle you. As we wake inside these poems, we see rivers
wild with trout, lightning storms, and homemade churches, nailed and leaning
against the side of a Tennessee mountain.
A two-time PEN/Faulkner Award finalist, Rash has been compared to writers
like John Steinbeck and Cormac McCarthy. With his eye for the perfect detail
and an ear for regional idiom, Rash furthers his claim as the new
torchbearer for literature in the American South.
Here is a book full of sorrow and redemption, sparseness and the beauty of a
single, stark detail—the muskellunge at first light, a barn choked with
curing tobacco, a porch full of men and the rockers that move them over the
same spot until they carve their names into the ground, deeper, even, into
the roots where myths start, into the very marrow of the world.
“Ron Rash’s Waking is a book of place, named and unnamed, the natural
world, of 'mud daubers and dust motes' as well as 'stars awake in their wide
pasture.' Waking is wise and beautiful.”
--Claudia Emerson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Late Wife
“Long live Ron Rash the storyteller, but here's the news. Ron Rash the poet
is back and giving us poems that are both the river stones and the water
making them shine. If allowed only two words for this wonderful poet, they
would have to be clear, and lithe.”
--Bob Hicok, author of This Clumsy Living, winner of the