Enough Light to Steer By
Steven Reese teaches literature and poetry writing at Youngstown State. His poems and translations have appeared widely in journals such as Poetry Northwest, West Branch, and Asheville Poetry Review. He is the author of two collections of poems: Enough Light to Steer By (Cleveland State University Poetry Center) and American Dervish (Salmon Press, Ireland), and a selection of his poems translated into Spanish has been published in Cuba, entitled Andando bajo el rumbo de la luz (Arte y Literatura Press). As translator he has published two collections of poems: Synergos: Selected Poems of Roberto Manzano (Etruscan Press) and Womanlands, Selected poems of Diana María Ivizate González (Verbum Press, Spain).
“Steven Reese explores a wide range of quotidian mysteries in language that puts on such a performance—vigorous and surprising, punctuated by leaps like a dancer’s—the poems never settle down or settle for less: they keep moving and pushing. Some passages explicitly pay homage to silence and listening, the great parents of true voices, and the result is that everything here counts. But the boon for us is that, while acknowledging those sources, Reese unflaggingly spiels his lovely spiel, too delighted with the gift of speech to turn minimal on us. The mode here throughout is what I’d call High Palaver, the tongue both at play and deadly serious. The combination makes for a debut that leaves the reader persuaded there’s definitely enough light to steer by but surely not yet near enough of Reese’s poetry to read.” –Philip Dacey
Cleveland State University Poetry Center
Reese, Steven, "Enough Light to Steer By" (1997). CSU Poetry Center Books. 109.