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Run the Red Lights (Paperback) (Ed Skoog)
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"Skoog [is] fashioning a poetry that fluctuates and ripples as incessantly as open water." ?Boston Review
"Ed Skoog is a master of mischief and misdirection." ?Prairie Schooner
"Ed Skoog's poetry is so ambitious it takes my breath away." ?The Stranger
"Run the red lights" were the last words the musician Alex Chilton spoke to his wife on the way to the hospital. In Ed Skoog's new book the poems are running all the lights, the way that talking casually runs and flows over itself and intertwines with what others are saying. These plainspoken poems rediscover the relationship between talking and thinking, as they weave among enthusiastic jags about sex and love, theater, music, New Orleans, numbness, ghosts, wolves, history, violence, rescue, art, marriage, mothers, fathers, and children.
After Katrina, I took the diet where you eat meat,
and lost almost a hundred pounds from a surfeit
of bacon, sautéed pork medallions, beef & lamb.
The weight fell away like a knight's armor
after a joust. I bought shirts at a regular store.
I played softball and ran bases, bounded them,
as if on a new, more forgiving planet. And
I went crazy, evened out, broke down again . . .
Ed Skoog was born in Topeka, Kansas, and earned his MFA at the University of Montana. His poetry has appeared in Poetry, American Poetry Review, The Paris Review and Ploughshares, and earned the Poetry Society of America's Lyric Poetry Award and the Washington State Book Award. He lives in Portland, Oregon.