Louis Gallo

Ghostly Demarcations: New Poems & The Pandemic Papers (Softcover: $20, 158pp, 6X9”: ISBN: 979-8-385676-31-6; Hardcover: $25: ISBN: 979-8-385676-55-2; Kindle: $2.99; LCCN: 2023904116; Nonfiction—Poetry—Subjects & Themes—Nature; Release: March 15, 2023; Click on links to purchase on Amazon): offers a smorgasbord of poetry with wide-ranging scope and implication. The major section, Ghostly Demarcations, covers domestic situations ranging from saving a bird’s life to walking the dog, from musings upon philosophic to scientific themes. References and allusions include scholarly thinkers like Heidegger, literary figures such as Wallace Stevens and Ecclesiastes, pop song artists, and reminiscences of the Blue Room of New Orleans to sitting on a porch rocker in the Blue Ridge of Virginia. In each poem the author strives to attain a transcendent epiphany of sorts to balance whatever darkness is encountered—and there is a good deal of darkness when musing upon the state of our culture, intimations of mortality, and what Freud might have called “the psychopathology of everyday life. The Pandemic Papers offers a private, autobiographical glimpse into the reduced life the author experienced during and after the advent of Covid, the social distancing, the sense of contamination—yet also the presence of small good things that mitigated the microbial onslaught.

Four volumes of Louis Gallo’s poetry, Archaeology, Scherzo Furiant, Crash and Clearing the Attic are now available. Why Is There Something Rather Than Nothing? and Leeway & Advent will be published soon. In 2020, he was invited to interview and perform a reading of his work by National Public Radio’s program “With Good Reason”, broadcast across the country. His work appeared in Best Short Fiction 2020. A novella, “The Art Deco Lung”, will soon be published in Storylandia. Chapbooks include The Truth Changes, The Abomination of Fascination, Status Updates and The Ten Most Important Questions. He is the founding editor of the now defunct journals: The Barataria Review and Books: A New Orleans Review. His work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize several times. He is the recipient of an NEA grant for fiction. Born and raised in New Orleans, he teaches at Radford University in Radford, Virginia.

“Louis Gallo’s poems are intellectually charged units of voltage (voltage, one of Gallo’s recurrent images, along with wishbones and cupcakes) yet always accessible, always challenging us to think in new ways about commonplaces we all take for granted. The primal tone of Gallo’s poetry is cosmic melancholy tempered with bursts of Proustian privileged moments, the anti-voltage of nostalgia sweetened with the hope of wishbones, the sweetness of cupcakes.  Reading this collection straight through is indeed one of those privileged moments.”

—Justin Askins, author of Neversink, In Search of the Wild and Changing Terra

“Louis Gallo is a poet who is finely tuned to actualities with the ability to exhibit them from unexpected angles. Each poem arrests the attention of the readers in a way to make us stop and reflect on these intense experiences. With brilliant precision, the poems engage the readers to balance between the poet’s sympathetic perception of earnest human condition and subtle humor.”

—Kristina Kočan, author of (Šara, 2008; Kolesa in Murve, 2014; Šivje, 2018) Maribor, Slovenia

“Francis Bacon famously said that he took all knowledge to be his province. So does Louis Gallo. Behind his poems lies a voracious intellect, one that draws upon a dazzling array of major thinkers —Wittgenstein, Aristotle, Plato, Freud, Descartes, Einstein, Camus—to name only a few. But reliant as he is on such colossi of often abstract, complex ideas, his poems first and foremost are always anchored with keen wit in the grit and gristle of a living world, one Gallo—clearly finds both intoxicating and erotic.”

—Randall Freisinger, Author of Plato’s Breath and Windthrow & Salvage

“These are the mature poems of a tireless observer, a person of intense, articulated feeling, one who has remained an eager and fascinated student way beyond the call.”

—Ralph Adamo, editor of The Xavier Review, author of Ever


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