DEATHLESS NUCLEAR FAMILY OF THE SPANGLED MIND

Michael Nardone

Judge’s Statement:

There’s something about punctuation – not points on a page but the way words cut and slip through other words, the way it sounds to be alive and seeing. Prose steps in where lyric can’t, here, poemwise; it’s less like looking through a microscope, more like standing in the middle of a busy street with a blindfold on. A good prose poet is always all ears. Nardone in this poem is doing great things with sound and with that kind of punctuation. We can hear family, TV, dinner- and dish-sounds, plus something else (“—Coffee? Tea?—Coffee.—Coffee!—Coffee.—Coffee.—Cream? Sugar?—A dreamworld. A cartoon.—Both”) coming through the edges. There’s an understanding here of the way said and unsaid start and stop each other, how there’s always something heard plus something pulling what you hear. Which is why this poem. And which is maybe why prose poetry in general. Just a theory.

Emma Healey is an undergraduate creative writing student at Concordia University. Her work has been published in Joyland, Cellstories, Broken Pencil and the anthologies GULCH (Tightrope Books) and Can’tLit (ECW Press). She is the Literary Arts editor at The Link newspaper, and the editor-in-chief of The Incongruous Quarterly, an online magazine devoted entirely to publishing unpublishable literature. She was the recipient of Concordia’s 2010 Irving Layton award for poetry.

 Michael Nardone will receive a selection of books from two presses that celebrate the prose poem: Coach House Press in Toronto and Les Figues Press in Los Angeles. Thanks to both presses for ongoing excellence.
Congratulations, Mr. Nardone.

Please note that the text is actually blocked in a specific way this blog is unable to replicate. *Okay we have images of the poem. Do let us know what you think.