American Compass, Bill Meissner's fourth book of poetry, is a collection that steers the reader on a varied, memorable journey down the American highway. Like the four points of a compass, each of the book's four sections has a distinct direction. ""First Corners"" features poems about childhood and the realizations of early adulthood. ""Breaking Dreams"" illuminates the myths and realities of popular American icons, with portraits of James Dean, Thomas Edison, Elvis Presley, and Joe DiMaggio. The baseball poems in ""Taking the Curve"" become subtle metaphors for the game of life. In the ""Soul Highway"" poems, the author concludes the book with a series of poignant personal experiences that will leave the reader thinking more deeply about his or her life.
Bill Meissner is the author of three books of poetry and a collection of short stories. His writing has appeared in more than 125 journals. His numerous awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship and five PEN/NEA Syndicated Fiction Awards. Meissner is the Director of Creative Writing at St. Cloud State University in St. Cloud, Minnesota.