After the Poison Review
The wonderful David-Matthew Barnes wrote a fantastic review of After the Poison for the latest issue of The Main Street Rag. Here's a little portion of it.
There is much to be admired in Kelley’s collection, particularly his ability to juxtapose the past, present and future of American culture, society and politics. He reaches into yesteryear with the though-provoking poem “Patty Heart on the Occasion of Her Presidential Pardon” in which he writes, “Only in California will they let you keep/your rock star shades on for the mug shot.” And while the poem certainly captures the social environment of that moment in history, Kelley – through his clever subtext – reminds us, yet again, that the past is constantly repeating itself. This poems asks us to consider, “You’ll wonder just who has been brainwashed.”
With change and uncertainty on our American horizon, After the Poison will serve as literary time capsule, capturing the events that divided many us, tugged at our heart strings, made us take a stand or simply look away. Kelley’s rank as one of our country’s highly regarded contemporary poets is well deserved, as proven by the beautiful work in this exceptional collection.