Foreword Reviews


The tickling of ivories, or birdsong, how one note relates to the next and amounts to something more—that’s the initial impression of Adam Houle’s lines, as they go about their work describing outdoor trades, chores, and pursuits. A Pushcart nominee, Houle’s poems have appeared in Poet Lore, Blackbird, Shenandoah, and other journals. He has a PhD from Texas Tech.


When dreams rise from you familial past
of tongue-speakers seared in Holiness
I listen for some sense in the gamboling
vowels and consonants as they spill
from the headwaters of your lips.
The Pentecostal Spirit inflames you.
Come daybreak, you are drawn and wan,
changed, the way Oklahoma’s red dust
must have stained the hand-spun hems
of dresses worn by the stalk-thin women
you weigh yourself against, reckoning
nightly in your attic glossolalia a faith
that compels you to seek more rousing fires,
first through grace then by sore travails.
Wet your brow. The lenient city admits you now
from off night’s furnace of creosote and shale.

Reviewed by Matt Sutherland

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. No fee was paid by the author for this review. Foreword Reviews only recommends books that we love. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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