Ryan Culwell’s Flatlands

Ryan Culwell’s album Flatlands comes out March 3, on Lightning Rod Records (Joe Pug, Billy Joe Shaver, Amanda Shires). I’m grateful to have etched the album’s cover art, a linoleum cut print. Also, if you get the physical album, I have a poem in the liner notes. Brian Boebel at Dual Identity Design did the package design.

I include here Gustav Dore’s “The Destruction of Leviathan,” which is an illustration of Isaiah 27. Not only was Dore’s leviathan a touchstone for my rattlesnake, but Isaiah may be a hermeneutic while listening to Flatlands

Not that this is any sort of creditable review, but I keep crying while I listen to it. But then I stop cuz aint no one saying I aint tough (tough just aint enough).

P.S. Rolling Stone premiered the album. For a little while, you can listen to it here: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/premieres/hear-texas-troubadour-ryan-culwell-evoke-springsteens-nebraska-on-new-album-20150223?page=2

Hammer Through Daisies

@curatormagazine posted my most recent essay. Surprise, I write about death again. And Dylan Thomas.

Irony isn’t bad, of course. It allows us to grasp the nebulae of death or time or memory and examine them as things, briefly, because irony is a posture toward existence that grants the bizarre possibility that things like flowers could stand in the place of gigantic death. We need it. But in the end, the metaphors of irony’s garden are ridiculous little signs. If we forget that and carry on tending our metaphors, or worse preserving them as though they lived beyond their moment; if we forget that there is real life and death beyond these things, or maybe even a god that makes and sustains these things, then soon enough, all of existence is rendered ridiculous. Elegant maybe, but absurd. See more: http://www.curatormagazine.com/seth-wieck/hammer-through-daisies/

Hammer Through Daisies

Finalist in Narrative’s 2013 Spring Contest

“Lantern, Name Thy Bearer”, an excerpt from a long story I’ve been working on, was selected as a finalist in Narrative Magazine’s 2013 Spring Contest. Here’s a list of the finalists, a group in which I’m proud to be found:

Jerad Alexander On Our Next Stop in Modern War
Robert Bausch Rescue
Joe David Bellamy Bad
Stephen Carson River of the Crumbling Banks
Camilla Collova The Year I Grew Up
Pete Fromm Grief
Roberta Gates The Man Who Wore Violets
Nhi Huynh Caught
Katherine James Fishhook
Louise Marburg Poor Bob
Elizabeth Mosier Animator
Lynn Stegner Cedros Island
Seth Wieck Lantern, Name Thy Bearer
– See more at: http://www.narrativemagazine.com/node/223484

P.S. The inimitable msodradek looked at it this summer and made some much needed suggestions, for which I’m very grateful.

Finalist in Narrative’s 2013 Spring Contest