Out of the Gate
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Belletristik / Lyrik, Dramatik
Drawing on poems composed between 1960 and 1970, Out of the Gate makes available for the first time a sampling of previously unpublished work by Ken Lauter, the author of fourteen previous books of poetry and a prose/poetry memoir of his experiences as an environmental activist, The Ratlue Diaries: Two Poets and the Rocking K War in Tucson Arizona (SFA Press, 2017). These early poems were originally assembled in three manuscripts: In Praise (which received a Hopwood Award for Poetry at the University of Michigan), Metronome, and New Light. Lauter, now seventy-four, looks back on these poems written in his late teens and early twenties with a combination of bemusement and awe, seeing them as raw and remote, as though written not by him but by a ghost-poet he can now barely recognize. (The ghost, in fact, makes a surprise appearance at the end of the book.) This collection includes love poems to his wife (a neuroscientist, photographer, and poet, Judith Lauter); an elegy for his father; anti-Vietnam War protests; meditations on the Apollo mission to the moon, as well as on the music of Mozart and Beethoven; and several longer narratives on a variety of themes.