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Poetry. RADIANT COMPANION is the one in the many, the spirit right beside you, the roar you can count on to lead you out of darkness. And as the companion volume to Matt Hart's book-length serial poem, Radiant Action, it's also an address book (the ones who matter most)a constellation of singers, of hands to hold, the community of collaboration(s) that makes the actionany actionpossible. These poems flash and bang with human defiance against death in all its disguises. Togetherness changes everything, impossibly so.
Simultaneously playful and poignant with tons of linguistic precision, the emotional urgency that informs Matt Hart's writing in RADIANT COMPANION raises the stakes for the readerhe is just that good. Hart, like his predecessors James Tate and Dean Young (to name two), is poised to take his place as one of America's boldest, most major poets. Noelle Kocot
In Matt Hart's RADIANT COMPANION, echoes of poetry past merge with a present that transcends its misfortunes, leaving readers with a newfound love of the blessed ordinary: blue winter sky, raw cotton, a billion starry skulls. 'The word is pain, / and the world is pain, / but the sun on our skin / is enormous and light,' proclaims Hart's Poem with a Chorus by Jawbreaker, one of many moments where this collection provides vital insight into contemporary life. RADIANT COMPANION rewrites the parameters of the pastoral and shows us where the ghost of John Keats lingers, as a punk rock heart hammers away in our chests. Mary Biddinger