James Harms

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James Harms

Publication Date: Spring 2012
108 Pages
ISBN13:  978-1-934851-33-3
USD $14.95 + Shipping

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What to Borrow, What to Steal is a special book for because it brings together poems that James Harms never collected in a single place.  These are the orphans, castoffs and runaways of his writing career, poems that have endeared themselves to him without ever allowing themselves to be domesticated.  Strangely and wonderfully, they seem completely at home together in this collection.

About the Author, James Harms

hunthspace=10James Harms is the author of six previous books of poetry. His awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, three Pushcart Prizes, and the PEN/Revson Fellowship, among others. He lives with his wife, Amanda Cobb, and their children in Morgantown, West Virginia, where he teaches at West Virginia University. He also directs the low-residency MFA Program in Poetry at New England College.

Praise for James Harms' earlier work

“In poem after poem, [Harms] shows the way we bridge the gaps between private mind and public world and move from alienation to connection.  Although loss returns over and over in the many flickers, ghosts, and fogs that obscure the past, still the poems insist on resolution.  Though inspired by a knowledge of loneliness, the poems serve, overall, as an antidote to isolation. . . .   The poems' speakers reach, over and over, again, to push us and themselves beyond disillusionment."
— Willow Springs

“Like Whitman, Harms is in love with everyone and everything, but he's stopped short by knowing how easily things fall apart. . . .  Like his contemporary, Campbell McGrath, Harms is immersed in pop culture and not the least bit ashamed of it.  After all, it's his native tongue.  But like all good writing, these poems transcend their cultural references and struggle to become something larger ”
— North Carolina Writers' Network News

“A narrative poet with a lyricist's ear, James Harms gives us a generosity of what it's like to be human in what is often an inhumane world, the blur and focus, the throat clearing and silences of life in the modern ocean; But like all good writing, these poems transcend their cultural references and struggle to become something larger. ”
— Chelsea


“James Harms writes poetry that is so unobtrusively well crafted it seems almost offhanded, almost unintentionally wonderful. ” 
— New Times Los Angeles


“Many of the poems in James Harms' The Joy Addict speak of an insatiable need, like Goethe's, to see again, and this time more clearly  to create what Harms calls "new inventions of grace."  The poet's voice is as native as the incidents it conveys, likable and humble, sometimes aimless and often lonely. . . .  At his best, Harms is tender and colloquial but never too far from elegant.” 
— The Missouri Review


“James Harms has a real gift for engaging his reader with the palpability of loss and what he terms "the stillness that follows loss."  At his best, his eye and ear are brilliantly coordinated.” 
— PEN/Revson Citation


“Harms establish himself as a connoisseur of the quirky.” 
— Los Angeles Times


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Upcoming Events

Sept24The Poets’ Follies Reading Series, sponsored by Marick Press and The Oakland University Writing Center, will feature the poetry of David Young, Todd Swift and Jason Storms at 6:30PM. The reading will be followed by a question and answer session.
Wednesday September 24, 2014
6:30PM, Room 212, Kresge Library at Oakland University
Rochester, MI 48309 
   - For more info...

““Nothing good ever comes of love. What comes of love is always something better”
― Roberto Bolaño