Poetry. "To be sure, Olson's poetry works the reader, wakes up the mind, and makes one wonder that someone first named an object or action, that someone once sculpted those 'bits of air called words.' And if, centuries ago, a person gave name to a thing, then why not the poet now? Why not pry word from the meaning or give expression to something seemingly nonsensical that may after all make sense? This is what poets do in the realm of art."—Rebecca SpearsThe night I thought I dropped Shakespeare on the cat I felt the reprieve of the man who accidentally goes through a red light without getting hit, the relief of the man who falls from a high cliff only to discover he's been dreaming. But the relief isn't immediate. It takes a little time. There are those few seconds in which the reality of the bed and sheets and room penetrate and so permeate the dream-ridden brain that the dream finally dissipates, melts back into the night from whence it came. There was no cliff, although the fiction of falling, the dream of falling was so real the brain believed all the whirling and twirling and limbs splaying and ground coming up were real. Meaning there is sometimes reality in irreality. Meaning a dream can be mud. Genuine as rain. The space in which I believed there to be a cat and there was no cat was that delicious space we call a fiction.
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John Olson is the author of eight books of poetry and prose poetry, including Larynx Galaxy; Backscatter: New and Selected Work; THE NIGHT I DROPPED SHAKESPEARE ON THE CAT; OXBOW KAZOO; FREE STREAM VELOCITY; ECHO REGIME; Eggs & Mirrors; Logo Lagoon; and Swarm of Edges. He has also published three other novels: SOULS OF WIND (Quale Press), which was shortlisted for a Believer Book of the Year Award in 2008; The The Nothing That Is; and THE SEEING MACHINE (Quale Press). Some of his articles and essays have appeared in The Stranger and Seattle Weekly.Author City: SEATTLE, WA USA