Men of Our Time
An Anthology of Male Poetry in Contemporary America
Fred Moramarco (left) & Al Zolynas
THE UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA PRESS
Athens, Georgia 30602
In this groundbreaking volume, Fred Moramarco and AI Zolynas bring together a comprehensive and widely representative selection of poetry reflecting both the diversity and the commonality of male experience in the United States today. The poems collected in Men of Our Time--257 from more than 170 poets-- include a wide mix of ethnic and racial perspectives that reflect the multicultural tenor of American life. They reveal men's most intimate feelings about the loss of childhood, sexual anxieties and fantasies, aging, self-sufficiency and dependency, and the perennial quest for a masculine identity. Above all, the poems are unapologetically grounded in a distinctly male experience or imagination. Men of Our Time reclaims a poetry that is connected to and expressive of men's lives in the closing decade of the twentieth century.
"Here is an anthology of startling intimacy, as involving as any relationship. Surely we women of our time must fall in love with such poets as these, men who tell the truth about themselves, men who talk to us."
--Kelly Cherry, author of The Exiled Heart
"History books speak of the external accomplishments of a few men in the past; Men of Our Time speaks from the inner spirit of many men of our time. It speaks with love, passion, and power."
--Warren Farrell, author of Why Men Are the Way They Are
Fred Moramarco is a professor of English at San Diego State University and a coauthor of Modern American Poetry. His poetry and criticism have appeared in New York Quarterly, American Poetry Review, Onthebus, and Poetry East. AI Zolynas is a professor of English at United States International University, San Diego, and the author of The New Physics, a collection of poetry.
Men Of Our Time includes poems by:
Sections of this anthology include:
After years by the ocean
a man finds he learns to sail
in the middle of the country,
on the surface of a small lake with a woman's name
in a small boat with one sail.
All summer he skims back and forth
across the open, blue eye of the midwest.
The wind comes in from the northeast
most days anmd the man learns
how to seem to go against it, learns
of the natural always crouched
in the shadow of the unnatural.
Sometimes the wind stops
and the man is becalmed-
just like the old traders who sat for days
in the doldrums on the thin skin of the ocean
nursing their scurvys
and grumbling over short grog rations.
And the man learns a certain language:
he watches the luff, beats windward, comes
hard-about, finally gets
port and starboard straight.
All summer, between the soft, silt bottom
and the blue sheath of the sky, he glides
back and forth across the modest lake
with the woman's name.
And at night
he dreams of infinite flat surfaces,
of flying at incredible speed,
one hand on the tiller, one on the mainsheet, leaning
far out over the sparkling surface, the sail
a transparent membrane, the wind
with its silent howl, a force
moving him from his own heart.
-- Al Zolynas
Clark Kent, Naked
They found him in a phone booth, huddled,
frail as a foetus, shivering in the cold.
The problem, he said, was that when he began
to take off his clothes for the usual transformation,
the blue and red suit with the yellow "S"
emblazoned across the front, just wasn't there.
He couldn't believe it, he said, and kept disrobing
when he was assaulted by a transient who took the pile of clothes.
He insisted that no one tell Lois as they led him away
covered by a wool blanket, babbling incoherently
to the air in front of him, remembering how things used to be.
-- Fred Moramarco
Living With Others
Yesterday, I discovered my wife
often climbs our stairs on all fours.
In my lonely beastliness,
I thought I was alone,
the only four-legged climber, the forger
of paths through thickets to Kilimanjaro's summit.
In celebration then, side by side,
we went up the stairs on all our fours,
and after a few steps
our self-consciousness slid from us
and I growled low in the throat
and bit with blunt teeth my mate's shoulder and
she laughed low
in her throat,
and rubbed her haunches on mine.
At the top of the stairs
we rose on our human feet
and it was fine and fitting somehow;
it was Adam and Eve rising
out of themselves before the Fall-
or after; it was survivors on a raft
mad-eyed with joy
rising to the hum of a distant rescue.
I live for such moments.
-- Al Zolynas
Press the "Back" button on your browser to return