My Town

David Lee

Peopled with some of the most authentically drawn characterizations of rural life since Mark Twain, Lee’s is a small town universe—”an aural agrarian saga”—filled with hilarity, love, labor, tragicomedy, and compassionate wisdom. Winner of the 1995 Western States Book Award.

ISBN: 9781556590740

Format: Paperback

About the Author

David Lee was Utah’s first poet laureate; in 2001 he was a finalist for United States Poet Laureate. He is the author of two dozen volumes of poetry, including The Porcine Canticles, A Legacy of Shadows, So Quietly the Earth, Last Call, and Mine Tailings. A former seminary student, semi-pro baseball player, and hog farmer, he holds a PhD with a concentration in John Milton. For over three decades he taught at Southern Utah University, where he received every teaching …

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“Always appealing and often memorable.” —Publishers Weekly

“Reading Lee’s poetry is like sitting on a wide porch in the summer with a favorite uncle you don’t see often and listening to him ramble along with tales of the local townsfolk… Lee captures the grit and authenticity of ‘country’ speech… in a manner reminiscent of James Whitcomb Riley.” —Library Journal

“It’s a speech full of eloquence, pathos, and humor, full of music, full of good sense. I could read it all week.” —Hayden Carruth

“… [a] lyrically splendid book.” —Anacortes American

“Lee knows the day’s work a true word can do, and My Town is generous testimony to the real work Lee himself does.” —Bloomsbury Review

“With precision and humor, Lee exposes the heart of the heartland.” —Small Press

“Lee’s town is our town, and… [the] heroes and heroines are every bit as compelling as The Iliad… or Dante’s visions of hell… In [Lee’s] work you will meet people you already know and their humor, pathos and sense (common and otherwise) will literally speak to you from the page. You owe it to yourself to listen.” —Lahontan Valley News

“Reading these poems is like sitting on a pickup’s tailgate—while taking a break from mending fences—listening with… wicked delight… to the foibles and mishaps of… kinfolk.” —Seattle Times

“Lee’s splendid ear for idiomatic, vernacular speech imbues his work with a kind of red-dirt, hog-wild lyricism.” —Bloomsbury Review

“The wonderful irony of Lee’s work is that this blunt, bare, in-your-face attitude… actually inspires compassion.” —Spectator

“In this string of narrative poems, Lee presents not only accessible language but also compelling characters… His vernacular verses have all the quirky rhythm of a three-legged dog on the lam.” —Weekly Alibi

“The poems of My Town, whether howlers, groaners or serious, build tales tall enough to stand with the other timber of American regionalism. Lee writes his poems in a created language that echoes any expressive folk who wear their education lightly… These poems have a solid thump. The style’s compelling wryness controls pain with laughter… My Town is an interesting place. Go look it over.” —Western American Literature