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Poets of the Monterey Bay

cover Anything on Earth

Poems by Ken Weisner


Praise for Anything on Earth:

“In a world of hard edges, Ken Weisner emerges as a kind soul amid irony, paradox, and the forgetfulness of history. His themes of a quiet boyhood exploring manhood are honest and generous in thought, eloquent in lean language; this thoughtfulness is transformative as other poems reveal a sensitive father guiding his sons into manhood. He unmasks the serene landscape to reveal the ugliness of our past yet is earnest in the belief of hope, of the song within, which heals anything on earth. These are crafted, tender poems, full of intelligence and wit.”
         —Jeff Tagami, author of October Light, and Shirley Ancheta, editor of Without Names

“Only Ken Weisner could persuade us to see George Bush as a small child, asking us to just ‘lift his hand with God’s hand/from the trigger.’ He brings this grave compassion to everything that holds his gaze: the loved—present and gone; the faltering body; the things of the world: a bowl of apples, trailing wisteria, the Christmas tree that ‘floats there between life and death.’ These poems overflow with music—as a subject, as a metaphor, and as the medium through which words are remade.”
         —Roz Spafford, author of Requiem

“Poetry is the physicality of music—not in drumming, but in the mind. With Anything on Earth, Ken Weisner gives us poems conveying what is doubly good: our instruments and the ardent notes we make with them.”
         —Stephen Kuusisto, author of Only Bread, Only Light

“With Anything on Earth, Ken Weisner’s wide poetic range, lyrical and narrative talent, and easy command of form and idiom are all on display. His poems stir, provoke, and cajole; they arouse, encourage, and ennoble. He sings feisty celebrations of aging bodies, cracked relationships, and nauseating politicians, as well as the glories of earth, sky, and sea. Here he is accompanied by the likes of Stein, Rimbaud, Shakespeare, Whitman, and Roethke, among others—a dream back-up band if ever there was one. ”
         —David Denny, author of Smog Baby and Fool in the Attic

Ken Weisner is a poet, editor, and teacher living in Santa Cruz.  He is originally from Oakland, a graduate of Skyline High School.  He received his BA in English from Oberlin College, an MFA in Poetry Writing from the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, and a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Santa Cruz.  Between 1984 and 1999, Ken edited the literary journal Quarry West through Porter College at UCSC.  He currently edits Red Wheelbarrow through De Anza Community College in Cupertino, where he teaches literature, composition, and creative writing.  His first book of poems, The Sacred Geometry of Pedestrians, was published by Hummingbird Press in 2002.  Ken has also worked as a poet-in-the-schools throughout the Central Coast, and is an avid hobbyist on the French horn.  He lives with his wife, the pianist and potter Kit Birskovich. They have two grown sons.

Anything on Earth by Ken Weisner
96 pages, paperback, $15, ISBN 978-0-9792567-5-2

Read four poems by Ken Weisner

Read or hear “The Gardener” from Anything on Earth read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer’s Almanac on National Public Radio on Friday, August 6, 2010.


Copyright 2010