Poetry. With AT THE EDGE OF THE SEA: PUSHING WATER II, Charles Alexander extends and amplifies the long poem that took shape in his 2011 volume, Pushing Water. As Alice Notley remarks, "Reading AT THE EDGE OF THE SEA is a dynamic experience, being pushed forward always. One feels constantly in touch with, behind the senses and light of the poems (words chosen with a typesetter's care), something like 'the poetry sense.' A world of grace behind things. '...the kind of poem / one might live in or among and return...' Or water ain't water, it's gently the unnamed element we're most in contact with."
Charles Alexander is a maker. His primary area of making is poetry and essays, i.e. the art of words, but some people know him equally as a maker and publisher of books. His books include HOPEFUL BUILDINGS (Chax Press, 1990), ARC OF LIGHT / DARK MATTER (Roof Books, 1992), NEAR OR RANDOM ACTS (Singing Horse Press, 2004), CERTAIN SLANTS (Junction Press, 2007), Pushing Water (Cuneiform Press, 2011) and AT THE EDGE OF THE SEA: PUSHING WATER II (Singing Horse Press, 2018). Truro/Shift, the third volume of Pushing Water, will be out in 2024. His poetry and prose have also been issued in more than a dozen chapbooks or fine press editions. He has taught at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Naropa University, the Univ. of Arizona, Pima Community College, and the Univ. of Houston-Victoria. He is a former director of the Tucson Poetry Festival, helped to found and still serves on the board of POG (Poetry in Action), and was instrumental in the development of the Tucson Warehouse Arts District in the 1990s and early 2000s. He has participated in the TAMAAS Poetry Translation Project in Paris, France, and in the CAAP (Chinese American Association for Poetry and Poetics) conferences in China. His Selected Poems, translated by Chen Du, will be published in China. In 2021 he earned the CLMP award for lifetime achievement in literary publishing. He currently writes a column for American Book Review about poets/printers.