Poetry. Late 2016, immediately after the U.S. Presidential election, Ken Waldman wrote TRUMP SONNETS: VOLUME 1, subtitled THE FIRST 50 DAYS. Veteran poet and critic, Grace Cavalieri, wrote: "Good thing we have the First Amendment or this Dude would be an ex pat. Funny and smart though." The collection quickly went through an initial printing as Waldman wrote a sequel, subtitled 33 COMMENTARIES, 33 DREAMS. Now Waldman has written the next in the series, subtitled THE INTERNATIONAL EDITION, with poems from the perspective of 72 countries. This new collection begins in Puerto Rico, includes voices from throughout the Americas, then to Eastern Europe, and the Middle East, to Africa, to the Far East, and then back to Europe, before a seven-poem epilogue set in the USA, the final one imagining 14 residents from Washington D.C. weighing in. The poems range from funny (an Aussie pities the Americans, and compares their president to an elderly kangaroo making a mad clatter) to grim (a Swede muses on the Doomsday Clock's advance toward midnight) to beyond sad (a six-year-old Nicaraguan explains what it's like to be separated from parents). And yet it's no surprise that a Russian, an Israeli, a Hungarian, and others find words of praise. The three books of TRUMP SONNETS are a singular achievement. If you think Donald Trump is satire-proof, think again. And VOLUME 3 has taken the project further. Ken Waldman and his publisher, Ridgeway Press, successfully raised money for this book through a Kickstarter campaign. It's a most deserving project in this historic era.
Ken Waldman is a writer with eleven full-length poetry collections, a memoir, a writing manual, and a children's book, and a fiddler with nine CDs, including two for kids. A full-time touring artist since 1995, he combines Appalachian-style string-band music, original poetry, and Alaska-set storytelling for a performance uniquely his. His writing has appeared in such publications as Beloit Poetry Journal, Massachusetts Review, Poets & Writers Magazine, and Quarterly West. As a performer, he's appeared at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, The Woodford Folk Festival (Queensland, Australia), and numerous theaters and concert series throughout North America. According to the Austin Chronicle, a Ken Waldman show is "like a Ken Burns movie . . . Always recommended." His most recent project is a quartet about the 45th United States president, Donald Trump. The four books include 100 poems in Trump's voice, and nearly 200 poems as commentary. Author City: ANCHORAGE, AK USA