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It’s 3 am. I’ve been driving too long and I’ve stopped in an all night diner. My eyes are adjusting to a fluorescent glare that makes everything too bright and too real. At a table across from my booth, some of Kelly Fordon’s characters are talking. They aren’t loud and they aren’t extraordinary and I can’t look away. “Just my chalky fingers/on the window pane,” one is saying. “Just my face pressed/against the glass.” Then silence. Later another speaks of “a skirt secreting bruises, tattered fingers hectic with grime, mind lashed to the mast.” It’s a big table. The stories are as real and dissonant as “a guy’s face…blank as drywall,” as Barbie and Ken aging and breaking up, as a mad friend begging for your trust, claiming that “the ‘medication took.’” Such pathos eschews the string section. The waitress has split for a smoke. After a while another voice confesses, “I have been crying for no particular reason.” Me, too. And I can’t stop.
–Michael Lauchlan, author of the award-winning poetry collection, Trumbull Ave. from Wayne State University Press.
With their close calls and fatal choices, Kelly Fordon’s unsparing poems will make you catch your breath. They’ll take you into neighborhoods of shut doors and pulled shades. “Look at us,” she says and says it in words as effective and as cunningly crafted as newly sharpened knives. With a relentless insistence and stunning wordplay in Goodbye Toothless House, Fordon gives voice to those trapped behind the idyllic facade.
–Gloria Whelan, author of Homeless Bird, National Book Award winner.
The speaker of Kelly Fordon’s fearless poems knows “the years pass like cafeteria trays.” The poems in this eloquent collection are honest, attentive and resonant.
–Faith Shearin, author of Orpheus, Turning, Darwin’s Daughter and Telling the Bees, among others. FaithShearin.com