We call it the heartland but we seldom drop by for a visit. Jim Reese catches the dying fire of the small town wasteland that staggers on with meth, desire, and neglect. These loving poems open the door to the real little house on the prairie. Time to step inside and finally have one honest moment with the forgotten center of our people.
author of SOME OF THE DEAD ARE STILL BREATHING: LIVING IN THE FUTURE
Here's a poet of extraordinary talent who juxtaposes the voices of ordinary people with those of his young family. Reese is most moving, however, when he writes with tenderness about his wife and children, and the delicate place that the young husband and wife create for themselves in the midst of everyday small town life and in the odd, precious moments when their children don't need them. These poems will make you laugh and cry. Ghost on 3rd is one of the strongest books of poetry I’ve read in a very long time.
—Maria Mazziotti Gillan
winner of the 2008 American Book Award for ALL THAT LIES BETWEEN US
In Ghost on 3rd, everything is connected, and everything is fragile. In these poems, ordinary life with its children and neighbors crackles like a mirage, and shifts and opens, and we find we've been all along in San Quentin prison. What is it we just saw?—a five-year-old child swinging on the monkey bars, or a tattooed convict, crying? Reese's eye is the eye of a father, and he finds his world both alien and comforting. These are poems of praise and poems of warning, infused with love and latent violence. Reese makes us feel the threat throbbing inside the song.
author of THE TWISTED TREE