Heartworm: Poems

Product Details
$14.95  $13.90
Moon City Press
Publish Date
5.28 X 8.27 X 0.32 inches | 0.25 pounds
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"Adam Scheffler is one of my favorite poets. After reading Heartworm, I am tempted to fold up each of his poems, put them in my pocket, and hand them out to people I meet throughout the day. They capture both the whimsical and the quotidian. They capture moments that evoke despair, make you laugh, and inspire awe. It's a fantastic book from a gifted writer."
--Clint Smith, author of How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America

"Adam Scheffler is a maestro of anaphora as he navigates our difficult "now" with poems about climate change, the decline of employee unions, and the disconnect of social media, just for starters. Scheffler is wise, humane, capable of looking at the absurd and terrifying, while often giving his readers an empathetic chuckle. Heartworm uses the overall metaphor of this disease, which affects dogs but can be treated and prevented with the intervention of human care. Like an earworm, the poems in Heartworm will burrow into your brain/heart/nervous system--except, unlike an earworm, you'll be grateful for their company!"
--Denise Duhamel, author of Second Story: Poems

"The poems in Adam Scheffler's second book encompass the full emotional spectrum from despair and grief to 'sweet joy.' With verve, humor, and gentle wisdom, he explores the indignities, disappointments, and sorrows of being a person--of having to 'scoop up/ some version of yourself to hand/ over from your mind's scum'--while also celebrating life's pleasures and engaging in the insuppressible impulse to praise, which Auden called the primary function of poetry. Scheffler finds beauty and takes delight in animals such as retired racehorses, turtles, snails, spiders, swarms of insects, as well as in Zamboni machines, Jeff Goldblum, the act of running, even a used condom--and in doing so, he shares with us 'the wild feral breathlessness' of being alive."
--Jeffrey Harrison, author of Between Lakes

"The poems in Adam Scheffler's Heartworm draw complex and compelling metaphoric constructs from popular culture to allow us to see the mundane world as a source of wonder and spirituality, in lines like "as if the job/were a kind of crop circle and we were the corn/that teenage aliens doodle their graffiti on for a purpose/that's beyond us." The poems often follow an at first seemingly silly assertion only to discover an elegant and evocative closure that exists in a wholly different realm of expression. Scheffler is at his best when he's praising the mundane world--especially aspects of it least thought of as inspirations for art--and in doing so in engaging and compelling ways his poems arrive at the discovery that everything is worthy of praise. The poems in this collection often have me thinking of the poetry of the late Tony Hoagland. They exude the same humor-tinged anger at how we've come to accept what we think of as the way things are, and, like Hoagland's poems, these poems ultimately favor praising the way things actually are, the way we should experience them, and how this world fully and genuinely experienced--as it is in Scheffler's poems--is capable still of making us healthy and whole."
--George Looney, author of Ode to the Earth in Translation and The Itinerate Circus: New and Selected Poems 1995-2020

"Adam Scheffler's addictively rereadable poems take us into the daily jumble of Walmarts, dog parks, and the alluring, dubious friendliness of the internet. The 'heartworm' of this book's title solicits attention and, even, prescription for all that gnaws at you. These are poems to read when you can't tell excitement from agitation. You are not alone."
--Elisa New, Director and Host of PBS's Poetry in America