Good Grief

Good Grief

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Author: Mikey Swanberg

Publisher: Vegetarian Alcoholic Press (2019)

"Oh (Jane) it's no surprise / but no man ever taught me // to like the world / or to like myself in it" writes Mikey Swanberg on the 26th page of this, his book-length elegy for Jane Gentry Vance, a quiet poet from Kentucky now gone five years, who maybe you knew and maybe you didn't, and it couldn't matter less because Good Grief is also, somehow, an elegy for young love's fantasies, and for the boys we make of our men, for age and also for living itself-how readily we give up on beauty, on full feeling, on delight, how thoughtlessly we forget our mothers, our teachers, and then soon the student still breathing inside each of us, no matter how old we are or accomplished or sad or cowardly, because life is for the living and living means learning and goddamnit we don't have time to worry if that is a cliché. Good Grief is a triumph. Buy a copy for everyone who has ever taught you something and start with yourself."

–Rebecca Gayle Howell