Poetry. This is poetic prose at its finest. Paul B. Roth's sentences unfold, gradually reveal ever deeper meanings, and then crystallize into moments of communicable inner experience no less drawing on the vivid particulars of the natural world. LONG WAY BACK TO THE END especially focuses on solitude, on loss, and on "waiting" so intense and resonant that one thinks of the French term, attente. "Who passes by, who doesn't notice you, who never notices you or ever comes for you," he writes in the first of the haunting prose poems collected in this volume, "is a much larger part of your life than you theirs." These are pensive, sensitive, mellifluous evocations characterized by the play of sunlight (or moonlight) and darkness. Shadows flit by or envelop in settings where the narrator pits his yearning against his need to accept. The tension here is fully ours, for each of us must also ponder which orientation should win out at the end.
g emil reutter @ Fox Chase Review
Paul B. Roth has been published widely in the United States and his work has been translated and appeared in journals from Japan, Peru, Israel, France, Bolivia, Italy, Ecuador, India, China, Mexico, Italy, Syria, Romania, Estonia and the UK. In both 2018 and 2020, he was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He is the author of seven collections of poetry of which his most current are Cadenzas by Needlelight (Cypress Books, 2009), Words the Interrupted Speak (March Street Press, 2011), LONG WAY BACK TO THE END (Rain Mountain Press, 2014), Owasco: Passage of Lake Poems (Finishing Line Press, 2018), and WEIGHTLESS EARTH (Bitter Oleander Press, 2022). He lives in Fayetteville, NY where he's served as editor and publisher of The Bitter Oleander Press since 1974.