"This volume bears witness to John Haines' position as a true man of letters. The essays, reviews, chronicles, memoirs, and poems (spanning four decades) testify to the breadth and depth of his concerns. The life - rooted for decades in Alaska - and the writing are bound together inextricably...What interests Haines throughout this volume is to clear away the numerous confusing, self-justifying and downright mendacious vapors that surround various human projects--be it drilling for oil or writing poems. He is a critic in the pure sense--a truth teller who has no use for relativism...Haines's voice is true and clear...an intensely American voice in that it insists we can be connected to the land in ways that may redeem and vivify us. It insists that the place of poetry is central not peripheral. It is rooted in memories that come from one man's life...This volume adds to the trove that he has bequeathed us." (Baron Wormser )
JOHN HAINES, poet, essayist, and teacher, was born in 1924. After studying painting, he homesteaded in Alaska. He is the author of numerous collections of poems and critical essays. Among his honors are two Guggenheim Foundation Fellowships for poetry, an NEA Arts Fellowship, and the American Academy of Arts & Letters Literary Award.