Bunch of Animals

A review of Bunch of Animals

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Henry Hughes is that rare and wonderful animal: a poet with a sense of humor, a spine, feathers for flying, a seething intellect, a deep reverence for the craft he’s chosen, as well as for the human and animal condition, and a very keen ear for the music of our humble language. Hughes brings insight and awe to the smallest things, and levels the large stuff with his wit. Everything here is both casual conversation and High Mass which is the true mark of all the best poetry. This is the book you’ll read out loud to whomever is within earshot, full of poems you’ll memorize without trying. Hughes marries the comic with the sorrowful, and breaks our hearts while we laugh. Bunch of Animals is the collection you’ve been waiting for, the one that will revive your love of poetry, and one you won’t forget. —Laura Kasischske

With great agility and knowing, the poems in Bunch of Animals surprise their reader in the illusion-lands between animal bodies and the human body, between the lives and desires of American fauna and the loves and duties of the people, including the poet, who share the land and water. Writing in an erotic, witty, restrained style, Hughes offers an expansive vision of life’s riches. —Ed Skoog

Henry Hughes what a rare creature, indeed! These poems remark the territories between nature and the human, the tame and untamed, as they coax out the “little wild” from within the day-to-day. —Emily Rosko

About the Author
Henry Hughes grew up on Long Island, New York, and now lives in Oregon. He is the author of four collections of poetry and the memoir Back Seat with Fish. An active angler, naturalist, and literary critic, he edited two Everyman’s Library anthologies on fishing, and his essays and reviews appear regularly in Harvard Review. He teaches at Western Oregon University.

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