One. Summer. Evening. at. the. Falls. Sun spikes through drifts of charcoal smoke
. And the ledge right there: four stories down to shatter its plunge pool. And you
can take the stairs to a gate beside the falls, where you can enter (it's allowed) ...
Author: Peter Campion
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
The poems in this collection capture the fantastic feeling of falling in love, all while keeping eyes on its lifecycles of crashing aftermaths, lingering regrets, guilt, and renewal. Peter Campion brings us to a series of scenes—on the damp patio, in the darkroom, and along the interstate—where we find familiar characters, lovers, and strangers. In the title poem, he takes us to the falls, where people and passions mix amid the sticky hanging mists: That charge of summer nights, that edge, like everyone’s checking everyone out. Lingering a moment in the crowd gathered to watch the rush and crash and let the mist drift upward to our faces, I’m here: the future feels open again. Even alone tonight—still: open. Campion’s poems introduce us to a range of people, all of whom are rendered with distinctiveness and intimacy. Their voices proliferate through the collection, with lyric folding into speech, autobiography becoming dramatic monologue, and casual storytelling taking on a ritualistic intensity. The poems in One Summer Evening at the Falls show how each character and each moment can be worthy of love and that this love both undoes us and makes us who we are. In narrative and lyric, in formal verse and free, Campion brings contemporary playfulness together with his classical talent to create this far-reaching and tender collection.