Poetry. "There are no illusions in the world of Charles Borkhuis. This is life without eyelids, and what we see is too disquieting for our own good, yet we can't look away. It's like film noir, whose frisson is a bad dream. Borkhuis' work, though, is the zero hour. Sure, we can hit the bullseye at the amusement park, ring the bell. But we're just saps. Let's face it, the real is not for sissies, or tough guys either. As for Borkhuis, his aim is dead on. DEAD RINGER beckons us even when we'd better beg off, until we realize we've been living in his world without our knowing. Borkhuis' poems exude their strange beauty." —Burt Kimmelman"I'm often reminded, while reading Borkhuis' work, of Derrida's portmanteau wordhauntology, a term which embodies the disjunction within being between presenceand absence.you can't unfriend us the voices saidwe're already your next thoughtit's true the presentwas already a memoryIn this darkly introspective poetry, inner and outer, self and other, past and presentbleed together. DEAD RINGER is an unforgettable volume of indelible palimpsests."—Tom Beckett
Charles Borkhuis is a poet, playwright, and essayist born and raised in NYC. His ten previous collections of poems include: Spontaneous Combustion [SurVision] - winner of the James Tate Poetry Prize 2021, FINELY TUNED STATIC, poems with paintings by John McCluskey [Lunar Chandelier], DEAD RINGER [BlazeVOX], DISAPPEARING ACTS [Chax], AFTERIMAGE [Chax], and Alpha Ruins [Bucknell University], selected by Fanny Howe as a finalist for the William Carlos Williams Book Award. His poems have appeared in six anthologies and his essays on contemporary poetics were included in Telling it Slant and We Who Love to Be Astonished [University of Alabama]. His work has appeared in numerous magazines and journals including: Brooklyn Rail, Otoliths, Marsh Hawk, Posit, BlazeVOX, SurVision, American Letters and Commentary, Avec, Big Bridge, First Intensity, Five Fingers, Jacket 2, New American Writing, o.blek, Talisman, Verse, and The World. He curated poetry readings for the Segue Foundation in NYC for 15 years. He translated New Exercises by Franck André Jamme [Wave]. His plays have been produced in NYC, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Hartford, San Diego, and Paris and have been published in 4 collections including Mouth of Shadows [Spuyten Duyvil], and Present Tense [Stage This 3]. His two radio plays The Sound of Fear Clapping and Foreign Bodies were produced for NPR [www.pennsound]. He is the recipient of a Drama-logue Award and the former editor of Theater: Ex, an experimental theater magazine. He recently moved from NYC and is presently living in San Diego. He has taught at Touro College and Hofstra University.