Poetry. The subtitle to JOURNEY TO THE SUN offers this summary: "Wherein the Author recounts his travels, at the tender age of Thirteen, to the Source of All Life, accompanyied by his father's employer, Mister George Westinghouse, and not neglecting the Author's youthful opinions on the matters of Publick Education, Poetry, and Messianic Time." Frequently borrowing from the texts of long-dead authors, including Cyrano de Bergerac, Robert Burton, William Blake, Vladimir Mayakovsky, and a host of other non-contemporaries, the result is an epic poem deeply at odds with the dominant styles and concerns of its time, which itself may prove timely.
"Brent Cunningham has written one of those rare, almost paradoxical books that balance the quietly luminous with the absolutely batshit. JOURNEY TO THE SUN reads like a collaboration between Judge Schreber and late Wallace Stevens—part Supreme Fiction, part Nervous Illness. I think of this book as an exploration of the wondrous folly and obstinate perseverance which it takes to write poetry in these parlous times, let alone a poetry that sets its sights beyond the dazzling horrors of our self-destructing planet."—Jasper Bernes
"In his awesome second book, Brent Cunningham rhetoricizes and exclaims his way to an answer of sorts by sending the Author, a 13-year-old Everypoet, to the Source of Everything and back. Part true autobiography, part inverted Inferno, part manifesto for these End Times, JOURNEY TO THE SUN spares nothing in its manically slant indictment of the mobile class, trivia, globalization, America, ego, environmental destruction, and the state of poetry."—Anna Moschovakis
Author City: OAKLAND, CA USA
Brent Cunningham is a writer, publisher and visual artist living in Oakland, California. His first book of poetry, Bird & Forest, was published by Ugly Duckling Presse in 2005. His second book, JOURNEY TO THE SUN, was published by Atelos Press in 2012. He currently works as the Operations Director at Small Press Distribution in Berkeley where he has been an employee since 1999. He and Neil Alger are the founders of Hooke Press, a chapbook press dedicated to publishing short runs of poetry, criticism, theory, writing and ephemera.
Reviews and Other Links
Attention Span 2012
Stephen Burt @ The Believer
finalist for the Commonwealth Club2013 California Book Award in Poetry
Lauren Levin @ Lana Turner
Trena Machado @ NewPages
Publishers Weekly starred review