Eagle & Phenix
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Snake Nation Press, the only independent literary press in South Georgia, announces the publication of Eagle & Phenix: Poems by Nick Norwood. Named for the cotton mill in Columbus, GA, where the poet now lives, Norwood’s fourth full volume of poems is a serious and thoughtful evocation of the lives of millworkers and others of all types “working for a wage”—mechanics, waitresses, farm workers, nurses, appliance repairers, bank tellers. A number of the poems in the book have been published in major literary journals and anthologies including The Oxford American, Shenandoah, Five Points, Atlanta Review, Southern Poetry Review, Poetry Daily, American Life in Poetry, Stone, River, Sky: An Anthology of Georgia Poems, and in Pushcart Prize Anthology XLII.
The launch date for the book is Monday, March 25, 2019, with an event to be held beginning at 7:00 pm at the Bo Bartlett Center, on Columbus State University’s River Park Campus, 921 Front Ave. Call (706) 507-8432 or visit bobartlettcenter.org, snakenationpress.org, or nick-norwood.com for more information.
In addition to poems about millworkers and other members of the working-class, the book contains poems about the enslaved, impoverished, and under-represented; kneels before the culture and experiences of Native Americans and immigrants; reflects the poet’s own working-class childhood and family. A section of one of the poems will be familiar to those who have visited Columbus’s RiverWalk as the verse has been made a permanent art installation—mounted in 10-inch Corten steel by sculptor Mike McFalls—on the seawall below the old Eagle & Phenix mill.
“The poems in Nick Norwood’s Eagle & Phenix have the desolate, sun-struck beauty of Edward Hopper’s paintings, and are peopled by figures, lonely but dignified, who might have wandered right out of those paintings into these pages,” said poet Jeffrey Harrison. “The book expands ever outward from a childhood spent largely alone, to ancestors and family, a vividly depicted town and its working inhabitants, and a sense of history’s conflagrations—yet a perennial capacity for wonder keeps rising out of the ashes, reminding us that ‘what survives may bless by simply being here.’”
Nick Norwood’s previous collections are The Soft Blare, A Palace for the Heart, and Gravel and Hawk—winner of the Hollis Summers Prize in Poetry—as well as the limited edition books Text and Wrestle produced in collaboration with the artist and master printer Erika Adams. His poems have appeared widely in such places as The Paris Review, Southwest Review, SouthwesternAmerican Literature, U.S. Poet Laureate Ted Kooser’s syndicated column American Life in Poetry, on the PBS NewsHour site Art Beat, on NPR’s Writer’s Almanac, and elsewhere. His honors include a Pushcart Prize, an International Merit Award in Poetry from Atlanta Review, a residency at the Jentel Foundation in Wyoming, both a Tennessee Williams Scholarship and a Walter E. Dakin Fellowship from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. He has also published a number of essays, reviews, book chapters, and critical studies of poetry. He teaches creative writing at Columbus State University and directs the Carson McCullers Center for Writers and Musicians in Columbus, Georgia, and Nyack, New York.