Bed of Impatiens: Poems

Bed of Impatiens: Poems

by Katie Hartsock
Bed of Impatiens: Poems

Bed of Impatiens: Poems

by Katie Hartsock


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Poetry. Katie Hartsock's BED OF IMPATIENS is astir in myths and myth–making in the backdrop of the grit, waters, scenes and atmospheres of the Midwest. While its tributes to Saint Augustine's Confessions are by turns meditative and daring, its travelogue of "Hotels, Motels, and Extended Stays" is quirky, irreverent and, yes, delightful. In BED OF IMPATIENS you can feel "the bliss / and the burning too." Little wonder it is a finalist in the 2015 Able Muse Book Award.


"Has American poetry ever produced a fresher, savvier, grittier, more elegant, and drop–dead formally exhilarating sequence than Katie Hartsock's 'Hotels, Motels, and Extended Stays'? If so, I've yet to see it. Hartsock is as deft (and loving) with the vulgarities of truck stop rent–by–the–hou r as with the secret wit of rhyme, or the venerables of Homeric epic: her range and her inventiveness appear to know no limit. And this is just a fraction of what bursts to life in BED OF IMPATIENS. I'm dazzled by the sheer bounty of it."—Linda Gregerson

"Like René Magritte I want to paint 'This is not a first book' under this first book. It is Lolita all grown up and taking us on a cross–country tour of the motels she stayed in with Humbert. It's St. Augustine as Dennis Rodman, elbowing us out of position underneath God's basket. But it's not a cacophony of surrealism. Ms. Hartsock's classical training—her knowledge and powerful rhythms—is the ground, the spine of this book (pun intended); but the excitement is watching the ancient and the contemporary meet in an explosion of true Form." —James Cummins

"Katie Hartsock's BED OF IMPATIENS characteristic vantage includes landscapes derelict and macabre, like the flooded grave in the first poem, and the endless highways of the US, with their extended–stay motels and the ghosts that inhabit them. Hartsock is a sharp and clever reader of the books of nature and of art, yet writes in nobody's shadow."—Mary Kinzie

"What truth to find in a world whose rivers 'we cannot swim in and no / cannot drink the water / cannot imagine that,' a land of 'seedless sweetness' and dank motels that are its monuments to transience? Katie Hartsock's answer in her ambitious first collection, BED OF IMPATIENS, is to wander and 'let the weather in,' to keep re–calibrating her position in an ever–shifting poetic landscape."—Lee Sharkey

"Katie Hartsock is attracted to 'beauty in otherwise unlovely place.' An often amused and goodhearted spirit sets the tone of some of Hartsock's poems, but the long historical and literary view of this poet also encompasses the tragic. Open to encounter, memory, feeling, avid for them, eloquent about them, these poems."—Reginald Gibbons (from the foreword)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781927409657
Publisher: Able Muse Press
Publication date: 11/28/2016
Pages: 144
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Katie Hartsock was born in Youngstown, Ohio, and has lived in Cincinnati, Ann Arbor, and Chicago. She holds an MFA from the University of Michigan and a PhD in Comparative Literary Studies from Northwestern University. Recipient of the 2015 Page Davidson Clayton Prize for Emerging Poets, she is the author of two poetry chapbooks, Hotels, Motels, and Extended Stays and Veritas Caput. Her poems have appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Massachusetts Review, Southwest Review, RHINO, Measure, Michigan Quarterly Review, and Midwestern Gothic, among other journals, and in the anthology Down to the Dark River: Poems about the Mississippi River (Louisiana Literature Press, 2015). She is an assistant professor of English at Oakland University (MI).

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments viii
Foreword xi

Wild Papyri
"The Flooded Grave" 5
The Sister Karamazov 6
Preternatal 8
Proverbial 10
My Labor, and My Leisure Too 11
Medea in Red River Gorge 14
Demiurge 16
Mississippi Stasimon 17
Cuticles 22
Myrmidons 23
The Natural Look 27
Mimesis 28
Last Take 29
Crazy 30
Veritas Caput 31

Hotels, Motels, and Extended Stays
The Ye Who Are Weary Come Home Motel 37
The Buried in Sleep and Wine Hotel 38
The Things Will Never Be the Same Extended Stay Hotel 39
Route 3220: Chateau Bayou 40
N67: Stella Maris 41
The Bump on a Log Hotel 42
The River of No Return Motel 43
The Let's Have a Cigarette and Assess the Situation Extended
Stay Motel 44
I-80: Liberty Inn 46
A55: Brunch at the Grande Madame Bovarian 48
The Demolition Derby Motel 49
The Philoctetes Extended Stay Hotel 50
The Ducks on a Whiskey River Motel 51
Route 6: Balmers Herberge 52
The Only Living Girl in Chicago Extended Stay Hotel 54
The Drop-Kick Me Sweet Jesus through the Goalposts of Life Motel 55
A841: The Corrie 56
I-96: Amway Grand Plaza 58
The I'm Not as Good as I Once Was, but I'm as Good Once as I Ever Was Motel 59
SR 165: Western Reserve 60
The Grant Me the Stamina to Pray Extended Stay Motel 61
The Western Edge of a Time Zone Hotel 62

I, Augustine I-XIII
Si Quaeris 65
Augustine I 66
Easter 68
Augustine II 70
Bonfire 72
Augustine III 73
Cleavage 74
Augustine IV 75
Highway 101 77
Augustine V 78
Who Art in Heaven 82
Augustine VI 83
Tribute 85
Augustine VII 87
The Angelization of Mr. Vodka 89
Augustine VIII 91
Wings on Wheels 94
Augustine IX 96
On the Heat of Upstate Travel in the Advancing Polar Air 99
Augustine X 102
Ayr 104
Augustine XI 106
Onion 109
Augustine XII 110
Midnight Mass 112
Augustine XIII 113
Bishop's Island 115
Notes 121

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