A new edition of a major work by ""one of the best poets in America""; Each of the 222 poems in this collection is narrated by a different resident of the fictional small town of Alliance, Illinois. Their voices, individual and yet familiar, describe the ordered simplicity of life in the American small town during the second half of the twentieth century. Dave Etter's themes and images come from the very lifeblood of prairie Illinois - rivers, trees, cornfields, wildlife, county fairs, railroads and, always, the people and the ever-changing seasons. Deceptively, invitingly simple on their surface, Etter's poems reveal upon careful examination a remarkable psychological insight and a careful craftsmanship. Alliance, Illinois is truly one of the great monuments of rural American literature.
Dave Etter was born in California in 1928. He settled in northern Illinois in 1958 and worked as an editor for several book publishers. He has won prizes from the Society of Midland Authors, Poetry Northwest (Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Prize) and the Illinois Sesquicentennial Commission. In 1982 his book West of Chicago (Spoon River, 1981) won the Carl Sandburg Award in poetry. Etter's poems have appeared in over a hundred textbooks and anthologies. His other works include The Essential Dave Etter (Spoon River, 2001), Sunflower County (Spoon River, 1994), Carnival (Spoon River, 1990), and Electric Avenue (Spoon River, 1988).