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The Biscuit Joint


64 pages / 6.00 x 9.00 inches / no illustrations

ebook available


  Hardcover / 9780807151068 / August 2013
  Paperback / 9780807151075 / August 2013

Winner of the Silver Medal in Poetry from the Florida Book Awards

Praise for David Kirby:

“Kirby is exuberant, irrepressible, maniacal and remarkably entertaining. . . . Okay, let me just say it: he is a wonderful poet.”—Steve Kowit, San Diego Union-Tribune
“Kirby’s voice and matter (teaching, literature, traveling, rock ’n’ roll, everyday bozohood) are utterly personal and, despite all the laughter, ultimately moving.”—Ray Olson, Booklist
“[Kirby] is a poet who peels away the layers of our skin to show us who we are: our weaknesses, our strengths, and our hilarious obsessions.”—Micah Zevin, New Pages
“The world that Kirby takes into his imagination and the one that arises from it merge to become a creation like no other, something like the world we inhabit but funnier and more full of wonder and terror.”—Philip Levine, Ploughshares
“These poems may be too cool for words.”—Carol Muske-Dukes, New York Times Book Review
Inspired by the carpenter’s biscuit joint—a seamless, undetectable fit between pieces of wood—David Kirby’s latest collection dramatizes the artistic mind as a hidden connection that links the mundane with the remarkable. Even in our most ordinary actions, Kirby shows, there lies a wealth of creative inspiration: “the poem that is written every day if we’re there / to read it.”
Well known for his garrulous and comic musings, Kirby follows a wandering yet calculated path. In “What’s the Plan, Artists?” a girl’s yawning in a picture gallery leads him to meditations on subjects as diverse as musical composition, the less-than-beautiful human figure, and “the simple pleasures / of living.” The Biscuit Joint traverses seemingly random thoughts so methodically that the journey from beginning to end always proves satisfying and surprising.

David Kirby, the Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor at Florida State University, has received numerous Pushcart Prizes and other awards for his work. His poetry collections include The Ha-Ha, The House of Blue Light, Talking about Movies with Jesus, and The House on Boulevard St., a finalist for the National Book Award.

Praise for The Biscuit Joint

“Cheerful and boyish, Kirby’s . . . poems are long and chatty, prosey at times, written as though Kirby was trying to keep up with some bright inspiration moving at breakneck speed.”—Publishers Weekly

“A performer at heart, Kirby’s gift is the free-wheeling, comic monologue. In poems of some hundred-or-so lines that are often just a couple of sentences, Kirby writes in jagged stanzas that make use of the white space for suspense and breath. . . . Kirby [is] a poet of shared humanity. His antics on the page (in this poem its orgies) are anything but. His poetry embraces subjects, words, and readers of all types in a blaze of ebullience and humility.”—Joelle Biele, Harvard Review

“In the end, the playful wordsmith has it figured out. Poetry is an orgy — no, not in its easily imaginable excitement, but in its real indeterminateness: ‘you’re disappointed most of the time, but you never know what’s going to happen.’ Kirby is never disappointing AND you never know what’s going to happen.”—Baton Rouge Advocate

“The work is colorful and enjoyable, beckoning back to Kirby’s vintage techniques while managing to showcase his poetic evolution over time. In the end, whether a new or seasoned admirer of his work, Kirby has proved that The Biscuit Joint is certainly ‘done right.’”—The Weekender

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