Wordless Things is the winner
of the Appalachian Writers Association 2004 Book of the Year Award in
From the book--
is almost as tall as I am.
He's always under me waiting.
When I work him hard,
I smell vitamin vapors
drifting up salty and strong.
If we trot by a mirror
or a dark window on the street,
I have to look. He's proud.
He knows I'm watching
and stands straighter.
Once in a while, I'll see women
eyeing him from their mounts.
He loves it but never lets on.
He just clomps a little harder on the road.
I feel his spine stiffen under me.
I take him out for a run every day.
When he is cut
or pulls a muscle,
I can't stop thinking of him:
How beautiful he was before.
As he gets older his mane grows
long and gray. I feel his heart's
rough canter below.
I will never understand him
as long as I live.
When I sleep, he stands in the corner
or gallops through a field of dream.
I ran him once till he stumbled
on a tree root, but could not drop me.
I rode him to the ground.
I don't look forward to the time
I'll have to dismount.
We have never been apart.
As long as I can remember,
my life has been his corral.
Praise for Among
Wordless Things --
"There's a really
original slant of vision in these poems, and some particularly
surprising metaphors, and a sense of a secret life lived and
--- Richard Hague, author of the award-winning Alive
in Hard Country
"Ron Houchin's work is finely crafted and has never shied away from
ideas. In fact, ideas-to-live-and-die-by are what emerge from these
poems again and again. Whether leaning toward the magical realist or the
plain-spoken Appalachian voice, each poem leads to surprising and
--- A.E. Stringer, author of Channel
"Ron Houchin's poems do one of the most important things I always
thought the "modern" lyric could do-- I just never expected to
see so much of it in one place... they're real acts of magic, & I
say 'real' because they actually hang in the air when you've finished
--- Dow Mossman, author of The
Stones of Summer
Among Wordless Things is available from your
favorite local bookstore, on-line from Amazon,
or order directly from the
Among Wordless Things, 91 pages,
ISBN 1893239349 softcover, $14.00.