After many years of honing his craft, Timothy Dekin fashioned a thoroughly contemporary style based on the pentameter line and the song forms of the English Renaissance poets. His formal mastery and control of lines are a rarity in modern American poetry. The compelling immediacy of his confessional tone and his range of feeling - from thoughts on mortality and self-worth, struggles with alcoholism, failings of family love, to a Buddhist-like oneness with nature - make for a striking combination. One moment Dekin confronts his unloving father, and in the next, speaks from a peaceful California setting where he is about to learn a lesson in the Zen of fly-fishing. This collection of poems was painstakingly assembled a short time before the author's death. It emerges as a work of unusual emotional and spiritual clarity and beauty.
TIMOTHY DEKIN taught in writing programs at Loyola University, Northwestern University, and Stanford University. He was the recipient of several Illinois Arts Council Grants, and his poems have been published in Poetry, American Scholar, Southern Review, and Threepenny Review. He is the author of four chapbooks, Occasional Uncles (Knife River Press, 1975), Winter Fruit (Elpenor books, 1983), Carnival (Robert L. Barth, 1986) and Errand (Robert L. Barth, 1989). He died in March 2001.