About the Author, Russell Thorburn
Russell Thorburn is the author of Approximate Desire (New Issues Poetry, 1999). His poems have appeared in a wide range of literary journals both on and off line, including Briar Cliff Review, Full Circle Journal, LitRag, Parting Gifts, Passages North, Poet Lore, Praire Schooner, Puerto del Sol, The Quarterly, Quarterly West, Sou'wester, Third Coast, Willow Springs and Witness. He has received a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and has been awarded creative artist grants from the State of Michigan. Since 2000 he has been teaching poetry in Upper Peninsula schools through Michigan Council of Arts and Cultural Affairs. He has taught college classes at Marquette Branch Prison and Northern Michigan University. He is editor of numerous poetry books. He lives in Marquette, Michigan, with his wife, Emily, and three sons, Gabriel, Christopher and Michael.
Russell Thorburn’s Father, Tell Me I Have Not Aged is as sure-footed and persuasive a poetry collection as I have come across in a long time. To say it both devastates and delights with its insights is simply to acknowledge the book’s depth and accuracy of emotion, its abiding humanity, and its vigorous pursuit of linguistic exuberance. I was not only moved by what I encountered in these poems, I was compelled. This is poetry of the first order. – Jack Driscoll
If every poem is, as Frost says, an adventure, then Russell Thorburn is a reliable guide and these poems, cinematic in their unfolding, full of startling visions and remembrance — good, rare gifts, indeed. – Thomas Lynch
In this collection of brilliant meditative poems, Russell Thorburn examines the strange ironies of being human, shaking his head in wonder, regret, bemusement, and even ecstasy. He looks back on the simplicity of the past with the wisdom of someone who knows no such simple life exists. Despite the shadow of death looming over these poems, despite the battle against the erasure of our pasts, Thorburn finds plenty to celebrate, for ultimately, this is a book of acceptance of life, with all its flaws — an acceptance of the human, stripped down to all its beauty and terror. – Jim Daniels
I’m wanting to leave these poems by Russell Thorburn on church pews and park benches, to fill cargo planes with his poems and airdrop them all over the world. I’m wanting to rush up to strangers on the street, the grocery store clerk, and to offer this collection as currency, to beg the ranting world one listener at a time to sit here and be still and be ruined alive by these fine poems. . . . You hold in your hands an artifact born of spark and tinder and this poet’s stubborn diligence. – John Rybicki