Listen to the poet
I get these pimples on the back of my head,
my neck, my
Reaching back to scratch or squeeze
I discover so many bumps sometimes
it’s like a goddamned mogul course back there.
I think about this when we are snuggled up
close, and she is running her hands through
my hair, gently stroking the back of my neck.
Doesn’t she feel them?
Sometimes I think I feel her
finger pause gently on a bump,
go over it, circle, and go over it again before moving on.
And I wonder if this is what we do to each other.
Praise for After the Hunt
Author of four books of poems, including Birdwatching in Wartime (Carnegie Mellon 2009) and Renovation (Carnegie Mellon 2005).
There’s a rugged elegance to Devin McGuire’s poetry—a voice that seeks out the pain and plain truth that hides below our everyday courtesy and finds behind it authentic beauty. You will see it too, trust me, in the way a young boy has to work hard and get bloody to kill a fish he’s caught or the way “this smoking wreck of man” has to work even harder to find a way through the trauma, damage, heartbreak and wreckage of everyday life, to find his way to that one sterling moment where “wet yellow leaves make beautiful/ litter on the ground.” After the Hunt is a potent testament to a mind alive and real.
Author of Also As Well (Finishing Line Press 2015)
Devin McGuire's singular talent shows in writing plaintive but stark and walloping poems. He's a writer with a disregard for appearances or punctuation, but with empathy and the ability to let his emotions hang out for all to see. His keen eye for detail when he writes of New England seasons or the rawness of animal death, or anyone's death, impresses. Ardent, wise cracking but always real, Devin aches with the absurdity of it all.
The verses are brazenly straightforward most of the time as evident in Women – “I sucked face with an older woman last night/and pitched a tent inside my pants.” (McGuire’s) choice of words might upset the classic-minded poetry enthusiasts, but no doubt will get a cheer and even inspire today’s new and younger poets… …All in all, After the Hunt is quirky and at times sardonic, yet humbly honest in subjects of love, relationship and loss. A mighty fine achievement for a debut and I think Mr. McGuire is on the right track in his craft to produce a second poetry piece.
Author, Publisher, Editor, Epic Rites Press
Devin McGuire understands that great poetry isn’t about form, structure, and other literary rules mysteriously absent from every 911 call. He knows that all great poetry requires is an author willing to reach into the marrow, pull out the good stuff, and leave a bit of his life on the page. You’ll find McGuire’s life on these pages, broken, wounded, and bleeding. After the Hunt is McGuire’s 911 call–stripped down, unpretentious, and urgent.