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Priest Turned Therapist Treats Fear of God

Poems
Tony Hoagland
My heroes are the ones who don’t say much.
They don’t hug people they just met.
They don’t play louder when confused.
They use plain language even when they listen.
 
Wisdom doesn’t come to every Californian.
Chances are I too
will die with difficulty in the dark.
 
If you want to see a lost civilizaton,
why not look in the mirror?
If you want to talk about love, why not begin
with those marigolds you forgot to water?
 
—from “Real Estate”
 
Tony Hoagland’s poems interrogate human nature and contemporary culture with an intimate and wild urgency, located somewhere between outrage, stand-up comedy, and grief. His new poems are no less observant of the human and the worldly, no less skeptical, and no less amusing, but they have drifted toward the greater depths of open emotion. Over six collections, Hoagland’s poetry has gotten bigger, more tender, and more encompassing. The poems in Priest Turned Therapist Treats Fear of God turn his clear-eyed vision toward the hidden spaces—and spaciousness—in the human predicament.

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$16.00
ISBN
978-1-55597-807-5
Format
Paperback
Publication Date
Subject
Pages
88
Trim Size
6 x 9
“Hoagland’s verse is consistently, and crucially, bloodied by a sense of menace and by straight talk.”—The New York Times

About the Author

Tony  Hoagland
Credit: Elizabeth Jacobson
Tony Hoagland was the author of seven collections of poetry, including Priest Turned Therapist Treats Fear of God, What Narcissism Means to Me, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Donkey Gospel, winner of the James Laughlin Award of the Academy of American Poets. He was also the author of two collections of essays, Twenty Poems That Could Save America and Other Essays and Real Sofistikashun: Essays on Poetry and Craft. He received the Jackson Poetry Prize from Poets & Writers, the Mark Twain Award from the Poetry Foundation, and the O. B. Hardison, Jr. Award from the Folger Shakespeare Library. He taught for many years at the University of Houston. Hoagland died in October 2018.
 
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Praise

  • “The writing is classic Hoagland: accessible and conversational, sometimes humorous.”The Washington Post
  • “Throughout, Hoagland’s work is refreshingly accessible without compromising sophistication or a complexity of thought.”Publishers Weekly
  • “Hoagland imbues smooth narrative with irony and surreal humor to deliver an especially rewarding book.”Library Journal, starred review
  • “Whether expansive or brief as aphorism. . . . the affect Hoagland conveys is often breathtaking.”Booklist
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