"The big event in poetry for 2015 will likely be the long-awaited resurrection of Frank Stanford, a legendary badass from Arkansas, much of whose poetry has been unavailable since his suicide at the age of 29 in 1978 Stanford was a hell of a metaphor-maker and simile-slinger, and could cast a spell of extreme intensity with a flick of his wrist.”NPR.org
"His love poems can sound like the cry of an angel falling backward through an open window, to borrow Dwight Yoakam’s line about Roy Orbison’s voice. . . . Mr. Stanford could lose his heart without blowing his cool.” New York Times
"It is astounding to me that I was not even aware of this accomplished and moving poet. There is a great deal of pain on the poems, but it is a pain that makes sense, a tragic pain whose meaning rises from the way the poems are so firmly molded and formed from within."James Wright
Hidden Water: From the Frank Stanford Archives is 200 pages of unpublished poems, photographs, artwork, and facsimiles of typesheets, handwrtten drafts, and letters. A preface is written by editor Michael Wiegers and an appreciation by Stanford's friend Steve Stern. The book also includes downloadable audio of special guests reading Stanford's poetry. Hidden Water complements Copper Canyon Press's definitive Frank Stanford collection What About This and is a must for any lover of Stanford.
My wallet was thick as the bible I carried around
Graphs of Elvis Presley John Lee Hooker Brigitte Bardot and the sodbuster Burns
I thought up nom-de-plumes in the outhouse and sent off
for things cryptic ads I used stamps that made the postmaster
ask where I was from
Born in 1948, Frank Stanford was a prolific poet known for his originality and ingenuity. He has been dubbed "a swamprat Rimbaud" by Lorenzo Thomas and "one of the great voices of death" by Franz Wright. He grew up in Mississippi, Tennessee, and then Arkansas, where he lived for most of his life and wrote many of his most powerful poems. Stanford died in 1978. He authored over ten books of poetry, including eight volumes in the last seven years of his life.