by Bruce Boston
Colusa: Dark Renaissance Books, 2013
Reviewed by Wayne Edwards
Bruce Boston is an icon in speculative poetry. For more than forty years he has been creating written art using an unrivaled palette of imagination. He stands alongside other luminaries like John Grey and Neil Gaiman as writers who have taken poetry seriously and who have demonstrated a continuing commitment to producing quality work in the form. Dark Roads collects some of his best long poems from the seventies through to today. Much of this work was originally published in obscure and now long-gone periodicals so this collection is not only the easiest way to acquire most of the poems, for all intents and purposes it is the only way to get them. It is hard to identify an off-limits subject when reading through Dark Roads. Boston covers diverse topics and tends toward a dark tone in many of them, even when the primary subject is not horror. If I have any complaint at all it is that there is no introductory material. It would have been nice to have an essay that put Boston’s work in context, or perhaps even reflections from the author himself. Of course the most important thing is the poetry itself, and it stands just fine alone.
The poetry is nicely complemented by solid artwork from M. Wayne Miller. The volume is issued in an extremely limited run of one hundred signed and numbered trade paperbacks, so do not stand on the sidelines too long on this one. You will end up empty handed.
All we need now is a retrospective collection of his shorter poetry. Recommended for poetry fans of all genres.