REVIEW: HUGE CLOUDYBILL CARTY (OCTOPUS BOOKS)

I am no longer
the person who once
tried everything.

The she gave me
my grandfather’s
axe. I replaced
the head,
and I replaced
the handle.
It is my axe now.
from “Kiko is Missing”

We are life replaced by life. We are grandfather’s axe, but stripped of anything that made it grandfather’s axe. We are maps to the present and the past. An erasure poem of everything that has been a part of our life. It’s cloudy, dense, and filled with fog. And then everything repeats itself, but with new parts and directions, and depression, and stiff rope, and the crackle of radio static.

Bill Carty’s Huge Cloudy (Octopus Books) is the map of life – of an America made from beauty, replacement parts, warning signs, and a “man sitting / on the steps, / giving me / the middle finger.” It’s not that we can’t see through the clouds and fog, or that we can’t make our way through the haze and craze that life presents, but Carty wants us to understand there are lines that shouldn’t be crossed. Or should be, but not this one, or maybe next time, or in secret.

Huge Cloudy ponders if we are not the we, we were expected to be, then “what else am I doing? / What am I pretending / to do while doing it?”

Purchase your copy of Huge Cloudy from Octopus Books.