Paperback, 144 Pages
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Part prayer book, part anthropological treatise, the poetry of Wild Soil describes and analyzes the often contradictory motivations for human emotions and behavior. In these verses, comprised of several years worth of selected material from various stages of his life, author Frank R. Chappell explores the follies of melancholic youthfulness, exuberant love, energetic faith, complete nihilism, profane tirades, and sacred contemplation. This collection presents a narrative of the individual’s navigation through reality as a fretful sojourn of introspection that yields beautiful fruit. It celebrates the unseen victory in everyday failures, the human imperative to create meaning in all things, and the ability to stumble upon the permeating feeling of interconnectedness in our struggle for purpose. Taking an anthropological approach, this collection of poetry offers a raw and unusual consideration of humanity’s paradoxes and contradictions.
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Mar 1, 2017It has been a while since I have been in to reading poetry, but Wild Soilhas reignited that love. Each writing is beautifully put together. You can tell that each one comes from a place of deep passion and unique experiences. Every poem brings up all different feelings. It is an excellent book to spark an interest in poetry or for someone who already has a love for it.
Feb 5, 2017Many words describe “Wild Soil” – relatable, sparse, and exploratory. As I read the poems, I found myself seeing my own experience in the words. Chappell talks of breathing in cold Pennsylvania air in winter, an experience which makes me feel both nostalgic and hopeful. He talks of age as something we can gain in just one short year, another experience many of us have had when a defining event seems to age us almost instantly. I found myself anxiously consuming the poems, flipping to random pages to see what surprising thought I would find next. “Wild Soil” is a wonderful book in that way. When I share the book with a friend, I will tell them that it is about growing up; about the quiet, meditative moments that seem to mean so little but consume our lives; about the big moments, like loving someone or looking for some sense of the divine in ritual and religion; and about the contradictory moments in life, like how we can at once love and despise an experience, a person, or ourselves,... More > how we can feel so comforted and connected when we are absolutely alone, and how our constant search for meaning and solidarity can leave us simultaneously exhausted and energized. In that way, “Wild Soil” is a beautiful book. I also love that the poems are sparse, with a focus on clear, meaningful language. All readers, no matter their previous experience with reading poetry, will be able to enjoy this book.< Less
Jan 9, 2017Full disclosure, I used to read poetry more often, but the recent times have found me failing, except for some of the offerings in the weekly New Yorker. "Wild Soil", by Frank Chappell, has stirred my soul again, after all these years. This young man makes no apologies and takes no captives. He springs up from his origins like an articulate artesian genius. His gift is not the kind that is merely cultivated from discipline, but many years of discipline there must be to have refined and perfected it. The soil from which the fountainhead of his poetry springs is as old as the Appalachian range and the memory of the colonial forebears. But the fresher blood that bubbles forth in these poems is timeless, like the blood of Abel, that cries up from the soil gone wild post-Eden. Frank Chappell gives a voice to old souls and young hearts such as he has met how long his way in a remote hillock near Chestnut Ridge. One must pay special attention to the myriad rights of passage that he... More > endured and celebrates, or that he observes among others, in his wrapt contemplation. Frank mixes the great themes of grand cosmology and local idiosyncrasy in single phrases and sidelong glances. Many of his subjects would blush if they had known that the troubles and inconsistencies of their otherwise unnoticed lives were the object of so much devout meditation and passionate reverence. Frank Chappell is by alternations, a believer and a skeptic, a lover and an alien; even his hometown is renowned for aliens, Kecksburg PA (look it up). But growing up surrounded by byzantine liturgies and redneck conspiracy theories, by beehive coke ovens and acorn space capsules, this anthropologist and poet does a lot better than make sense of it. He makes it beautiful, and maybe even might persuade us to believe it really was beautiful before he found it so.< Less
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- Frank R. Chappell (Standard Copyright License)
- November 16, 2016
- Perfect-bound Paperback
- Interior Ink
- Black & white
- 0.59 lbs.
- Dimensions (inches)
- 5.83 wide x 8.26 tall
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