In a bizarro world America, Don Winter would be a superstar, as would any poet of clarity, honesty, and an economy when it comes to the reins of language. But we are stuck in this realm where the title of poet is a personal reduction, given to the pity eye and cool attitudes at social gatherings, while the MFA post-modernists and abstractionists and their self-adorned edginess and sterile verse take residence in the glossies and anthologies.
Don Winter’s new collection No Way In But Out (Working Stiff Press) is in no way a departure, but a continuation on the poet’s own vision of blue-collar horror shows and the American dream exposed as a crazy man-child behind a torn curtain. Thus far, that is more than a little okay.
Don Winter has, as Raymond Carver said, seen some things.
If poems such as “Going On,” “Late Shift Waitress at Wanda’s Grill,” or “The Hamtramck Hotel” don’t stir something in the pit of your guts then you have led a an uneventful life and have been blessedly sheltered. Winter offers up heaping helpings of a vision set in the tepid, bleaker shade of the stars and stripes that shows our home country is not always the land of milk and honey, but all too often a Darwin boxing ring where dreams are in danger of falling like mirrors to pavement.
About the author:
Troy Schoultz writes and publishes his poetry and is attempting his first novel. His inspirations include thunderstorms, garage rock, forgotten cemeteries, abandoned factory buildings, found objects, old men crying in taverns before noon, the number five, and Wisconsin folklore. If you approach him slowly without initial eye contact, he will not consider you a threat and might even be friendly.