Cover Image: Love Song to the Demon-Possessed Pigs of Gadara

Love Song to the Demon-Possessed Pigs of Gadara

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Member Reviews

For such a long time, I haven't read any poetry collection like this one. It is a very delicate collection, small, just the best. This poetry collection was written by a young man, mostly entangles with family matters as well as his own emotional and psychological struggles. For me personally, the Book title does not say much of the collection, I'd rather change it. 

"Father", "My Father" etc. have appeared in poems repetitively. The poet's struggle with what his father has been given to him, passed on to him is very much out there. With every rhyme and rhythm, one relate the pain. For those who felt lonely, carrying all those inheritance and responsibilities that do not belong to themselves, this poetry collection is a good echo. There is pain, there is struggle, there is also "thank you"s. In fact, in the poem entitled "Upon Receiving My Inheritance", there are so many Thankyous that it felt like all of them are attempts and survivals from every single child that has been hurt in one way or another. How twist that "thank you"s are the outcome of it. So many Thankyous that suddenly being grateful becomes not that unfortunate, they are welled over with humbleness, decency and the will power of ending it. 

Of course, there are "Blames" too! So many blames that with a rapid rhythm of reading the poem "There Is No Power in Blame", it took my breathe away with its absurdity, nearly ridiculous amount of anger. Blame blame, but what are there for children to blame is the one person who the actual blame belongs to refuses it, denies it, neglect it. Those previous generation figures, bullying fathers, silent mothers, whatever grandparents are as if ghosts haunting the poet and his poems. They even dwell in pills, ambulances and the knives. Don't you ever think about taking your life, it will never be enough. Write one more poem!
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Love Song to the Demon-Possessed Pigs of Gadara by William Fargason is the poet’s debut collection of poetry. Fargason is the winner of the 2019 Iowa Poetry Prize. His poetry has appeared in The Threepenny Review, Prairie Schooner, New England Review, Barrow Street, Indiana Review, Rattle, The Cincinnati Review, Narrative, and elsewhere. He received two awards from the Academy of American Poets, a scholarship to Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and a 2018-2019 Kingsbury Fellowship.

The poetry follows the life of the poet. The opening poems set the tone for the entire collection. The father is demanding in The Great Santini way; he pushes in that 1950s, be a man way. Boys are not supposed to say indoors and play on Gameboys or wear eye shadow and be Goths. The father’s life is touched upon and perhaps the incident that shaped his view of his child. The father’s presence forms a shadow on the child’s life. The poetry is well written as always with the Iowa Poetry Prize, but this collection has me falling through the cracks as an older reader. It is a theme for younger readers or at least those that do not fall into the Baby Boomer category. There is a definite gulf between generations, and it shines in this collection. Well worth examining.
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