{ :boys – poems – Luke Johnson }

:boys
poems, Luke Johnson
Blue Horse Press, 2019

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Luke Johnson is a storyteller who denies the braggart and kisses the ear of those mourning the loss of spectacle. The poems in Johnson’s :boys are surely tough, are more surely ecstatic betrayals of a hand-me-down confidence, but also seemingly say, hey, this is the horse that came with the farm, and then go on to conjure from the workmanlike darkness a scribble of possessed ants. In this place, decay, a day early, falls asleep and never wakes up. In this place, one can imagine another place where perhaps a city gargoyle resigns itself to being erased by its love for scarecrow. Johnson does not sell the work’s violence to surrender or resurrection, but instead positions it might it be seen by the lowest bidder whose home is far enough away that to walk there would soften the lower back of any boy holding a knife. Any boy whose father runs ahead to pocket the stone before it learns of a second bird.

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reflection by Barton Smock

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