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How Imagery From Diverse Places Informs Stephen Anderson's Poetry

Stephen Anderson is a Milwaukee area poet, but if you read his latest collection, it would give few clues to where he lives.  The book, called The Dream Angel Plays the Cello, is filled with imagery that brings to mind places as diverse as the Caribbean, the desert, and Europe.

"I think through my travels and experiences abroad," Anderson explains, "I think all of that has given me a wider eye in terms of what I choose to write about."

Stephen Anderson will talk about and read from his new collection Monday evening at Boswell Book Company.

Poem: Then the Note Faded Away

He is a barstool fixture at the pub,
a lonesome man
throughout the winter.
He has spent his life trying to forget…
because he may have broken her heart.
At best recollection, he believed he had lost
his virginity with her in New Orleans when
he truck-rigged there in his 20’s. Like a lot
of rootless young men, he wandered off.
In an act of reinvention, then changed his name,
but his thoughts lingered: A letter maybe, in blue
cursive Parisian ink to her
, but never.
The sunset and the tide started to rise
and the boatyard was now cold and ghostly
as his gray image stood on the bowsprit of his schooner,
and he remembered his boat was at least
something he could fix, before he slipped
away into the night, its quiet presence ever-present
until a warm, majestic tone arose inside him
and he mumbled under his breath, If I could forget
about music I would.

Then, the note faded away forever.