Poetry. Expanding the palette of contemporary surrealism while harkening back to the stories and prayers at the origin of poetry, DESTRUCTION MYTH is a series of absurdist myths of creation and destruction that are at times both inventively silly and surprisingly emotionally direct. This book attempts the world again and again, only to find that even the most ridiculous of creations contains the seeds of its own destruction.
Author City: DENVER, CO USA
Mathias Svalina was born in Chicago. He is the author of THE WINE-DARK SEA (Sidebrow Books, 2016), WASTOID (Big Lucks Books, 2014), THE EXPLOSIONS (Subito Press, 2012), I AM A VERY PRODUCTIVE ENTREPRENEUR (Mud Luscious Press, 2011) and DESTRUCTION MYTH (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2009). With Zachary Schomburg, he co-edits Octopus Magazine and Octopus Books. He currently teaches writing and literature in Denver, Colorado.
Reviews and Other Links
Noel Sloboda @ NewPages
Justin Taylor @ HTMLGIANT
Charles Jensen @ The Collagist
Jay Robinson @ Pinstripes Inc.
Dennis Etzel Jr. @ Gently Read Literature
Eileen Tabios @ Galatea Resurrects
Collin Schuster @ 360 Main Street
Marcus Myers @ H_NGM_N
Marc Schuster @ Small Press Reviews
Katie Ellison @ Front Porch Journal
Sandra Beasley @ Blackbird
Books Noted @ Poets.org
interview by Nick Sturm @ Bookslut
excerpt: “Creation Myth” @Poetry Daily
“Inspired, concise, often macabre yet always joyful, these creation myths are filled with a thousand odd, jagged miracles. A truly exhilarating read. Bravo!”
“If I feel physically as if the top of my head is taken off and replaced with a soft serve ice cream machine, I am pretty sure it is poetry. Svalina’s book does no less, and also so much more. Read but also believe this book of fantastic lies. It’s like how you see a cat sitting there and you think ‘that is just a cat’ and then you realize that cat is God. Mathias Svalina has reinvented Yahweh as an Animorph. When this book is taught in college classrooms, students will curl up on the air conditioning vents and ask for salt.”
“In the beginning, we were children and we had beautiful imaginations, but we had no home for them. Then up sprouted Mathias Svalina’s Destruction Myth and we did. It too was beautiful, bloody, silly, haunted. At first we thought it was godly, and then we discovered it was human. We feared it; we loved it; we slept with it under our pillows.”
"In the beginning, everyone looked like Larry Bird. In the beginning, there was a rotting pig corpse. Everyone wanted to fight to the death. There was a hole in the basement floor. And a bunny with a broken leg. There were ghosts. Evildoers. A gun. Bacon. Cologne. A pencil. In these inventive, often deeply unnerving poems, Mathias Svalina offers us a string of forty-four creation myths and one longer, unsettling destruction myth. The result is a sonically complex, breathtakingly witty book, a collection of poems that surprises first with its wildly orchestrated clamor of narratives then, on reflection, surprises all over again with its intelligence and insight into the many ways we tell stories, the many means by which we imagine ourselves participating in them. This is an ambitious, brilliant first book.”