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February 21 , 2011

Going Back


In his sixth collection of poetry, Going Back, poet Jim Neely takes us on the long road from youth to old age with a wide array of human insights. He presents richly sensitive poetry overflowing with love and laughter for all things human and a voice that rings true with inevitable insights.

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The poems in this collection are intentionally scattered throughout the seven stages of man. In “Pitchfork,” a boy lies on his back gazing up in darkness with his father, learning how to calculate the distance of storms from a strike of lightening. A member of “The Greatest Generation,” Neely shows what made men so proud to go to war for their country. There is the joyful love of a first marriage in “Honeymoon” and the sadness of divorce in “Dream House.”
He struggles alone to unearth Hemingway’s grave in the midst of an Idaho snowstorm in “A Farewell to Arms” and recalls his incomparable father’s love of children in “The Cardboard Slide” and “Swinging with Heather.”

Direct and straightforward, yet realistic and imaginative in style, Neely’s collection of verse explores a lifetime of experiences and emotions with pathos, humor, and startling resolutions.

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