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Smell of Salt, Ghost of Rain

P. Ivan Young

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  • Paperback: 72 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.00" x 9.00"
  • ISBN: 978-1-938144-25-7
  • Publication Date: 2015-03-15
  • BrickHouse Books, Inc.

Availability: In stock

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Paperback$15.00

Smell of Salt, Ghost of Rain

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In pool hall and tenement, pine forest and ocean depths, these poems reclaim the abandoned moment from chalk and rust, shadow and silence. Young summons forth the grit and the ghost, the breakable and the beautiful to show us how we are “one thing breathing” in an earthly elegance that is surely the language of grace.


You're reviewing: Smell of Salt, Ghost of Rain

Spanning the stark, unsettling revelations of specific and haunting memory, and the calm reflections and meditations of the present, Ivan Young in his debut collection, Smell of Salt, Ghost of Rain, reminds us that poetry has the capacity to capture both the violence of our human flaws and the redemptive elegance of our embrace of beauty.  He has left it all out on the field, and we are the better for it.—Kwame Dawes, author of Duppy Conqueror: New and Selected Poems.  


In pool hall and tenement, pine forest and ocean depths, these poems reclaim the abandoned moment from chalk and rust, shadow and silence. Young summons forth the grit and the ghost, the breakable and the beautiful to show us how we are “one thing breathing” in an earthly elegance that is surely the language of grace.—Meredith Davies Hadaway, author of The River is a Reason


In this stunning and lovely new book, Ivan Young locates beauty in a Southern housing complex, where boys "stole what they needed," knew the local deputy by name and their mothers called them home "with their icy vodka voices." A world where "someone always left."  In one poem that left me breathless, a boy digs a paper doll out of the trash and names it for his dead brother.  "Now he safe," he says.  "I'ma take him home." Maybe this is what the poet does, finds such light and clarity in almost-desperate lives.  This is a beautiful book.  — Ed Madden, author of Nest

P. Ivan Young

P. Ivan Young received his M.F.A. from the University of South Caro­lina and is the author of A Shape in the Waves, winner of the 2008 SC Poetry Initiative’s Chapbook Contest. He is a recipient of a 2011 Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award and the 2013 winner of the Norton Girault Literary Prize. His work has appeared in North American Review, Crab Orchard Review, Fourteen Hills, Hayden’s Ferry Review, The London Magazine, Cream City Review, and Zone 3, among others. He currently teaches in the University of Nebraska system and lives in Omaha, Nebraska, with his wife and two children