Today's poem is "This Is How It Is"
from This Far from the Source

Mid-List Press

Neil Shepard is a professor at Johnson College in Johnson, Vermont. The author of two previous collections of poetry, his poems have appeared in anthologies and such literary journals as Boulevard, The Paris Review, Ploughshares and TriQuarterly. He is the senior editor of Green Mountains Review and a founding member of PoJazz, a performance group for northern New England jazz musicians and poets.

Other poems by Neil Shepard in Verse Daily:
June 29, 2005:   "Snowdon Philosophy" "Count me one object among many..."
April 2, 2004:  "Oh! On an April Morning" "I'm ready to murder the flowers...."

About This Far from the Source:

"Animated by an energetic mix of intelligence, curiosity, and passion, loyal to the facts of the matter and to the feelings that surround it, Neil Shepard’s poems range from occasions of public, political concern to moments of the closest private, domestic implication. In mature meditations, in sharply detailed memories, in muscular free verse and lightly worn habits of descriptive verve he manages to make the world his subject—from the racial conundrums of the South, to the habits of birds, to celebrations of an aging father and the birth and growth of a daughter. In this new collection there are moods and tones—philosophic, emotional, humorous, skeptical, assertive, self-deprecatory—that broaden his poetic range, sharing his sense of the life-journey as a voyage of discovery, as an adventure in which the imagination is our best means of responding to whatever life offers, especially when distance from 'the source' is a palpable fact."
—Eamon Grennan

"Neil Shepard’s new poems are talkative, reader-friendly, and story-wise, built from centers of affection and wit, yet they should not be taken at too much face value. If, just under their surfaces, they argue against the elegy, the easy answer, the quick fix, what they argue for is emotional complexity and generosity and the elaboration and exposition of the domestic detail that grounds the life of the spirit."
—Stanley Plumly

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