Books & Chapbooks
Publication Date: October 15, 2020
Format: Softcover, 6" x 9"
Accents Publishing is proud to bring to you the first full-length poetry collection by Karen Schubert. The Compost Reader features a number of the best poems of her journey as a poet. We love the voice, the playfulness, the gravity, as well as the immaculate attention to detail, the devotion to the poetic art. This is a real accomplishment.
What Others Say About The Compost Reader
In her first full-length collection, Karen Schubert works "Elbows deep in compost," sifting through that which accumulates with the passage of time, the fecund and dangerous accumulations of a life: memory, regret, joy, and loss. Schubert's fertile reflections by turns witness, correct, and renew the past, her patient gaze transforming both observer and observed. This collection runs through the events of a life like the Ohio River runs through Schubert's native terrain, and like that river "it will arrive / with more than when it started."
Karen Schubert's poems begin in the moment in a particular place and time, without introductions, without commentary. But this stark present is gradually woven with reminiscence which, like compost, makes the moment yield its full possibilities. As the poem grows, the distance between writer and reader diminishes until we feel a bond with genuine intimacy.
"In the city where I come from," begins one of the poems in Karen Schubert's new book, "the cost of a thing depends on how much you have." Beware this book, then, reader: for what won't cost you more, once you've taken in all the riches to be found in these pages? The Compost Reader is a delight, where the wind plays through organ pipes strapped to the roof of a car, where kids play on baseball diamonds built on the leftovers from sawmills, where you might buy pastries called "Jesus Heels" at a roadside stand. "There should be a name for these days / when we wake in one place and sleep / in another," muses the conclusion of another poem … and if that name is found, we might employ it here as well: these poems are never content to leave us where they began. Page after page, like the seer in her title poem, Schubert seems able to spin any of the world's small details into a meaningful, unexpected truth.
In Dear Youngstown, poet Karen Schubert delves into stories meant to convey emotional truths about living in Youngstown, Ohio. From the opening poem, "Reading at the Old Ward Bakery" to the ending poem "After the New Yorker Festival," Schubert gently leads you through reminiscence and recall, offers observation, appreciation, and tribute to a city she clearly loves. In her poem "Letter to Youngstown, " she celebrates its diversity.
Dear Youngstown boasts bold and exciting cover art by Cleveland-area artist Timothy Gaewsky. It contains forty-eight pages of poems, including "Ella Fitzgerald Marries Ray Brown Dec. 10, 1947," "Sculpture Near Bliss Hall," "I Miss You, Chicken in Every Pot," and "Autumn with Parker."
Wildlife, refuse, people and their quirks, the restless tides. This single poem spanning the pages of Karen Schubert’s homage to the Headlands flows as intimately and surprisingly as a journal, each entry penned with Schubert’s usual penetrating, ever generous eye.
“Karen Schubert’s I Left My Wings on a Chair takes flight through a series of prose poems that stay afloat with sardonic wit and social satire. Schubert takes on everything from Etsy to Wittgenstein to the many Karen Schuberts in compelling, contemplative, and beautifully wrought vignettes. Russel Edson called the prose poem ‘a cast-iron airplane that can actually fly,’ and these prose poems soar!”
January 2014, 32 pgs
Karen Schubert’s Bring Down the Sky draws us into the world of the artist, and locates there the deep human impulse for esthetic and moral authenticity. These poems coalesce beneath us, sure footing, a gentle yet powerful literary response to Archimedes’ assertion, “Give me a place to stand and a lever long enough and I will move the world."