After reading this book I dreamt I had a sex change and woke after surgery looking EXACTLY like Logan Ryan Smith! "BUT THAT DOESN'T MAKE ANY SENSE," you say. I KNOW, I KNOW! Which poem did it to my dream? "...faulty memory / and harrowed indulgence / caught / off / guard." Logan sticks his knee into the back of the poem's neck on the ground, MAKING IT BEND in new ways! The illiterate should learn to read JUST to experience his transformative powers! But you can already read, you are reading this. Are you really still standing there WONDERING if you should buy this book!? Take it up to the register and pay for it NOW! GEESH!-CAConrad, author of THE BOOK OF FRANKLogan Ryan Smith's HUMANS & HORSES is about humans and horses and they are both us. Humans and horses are dead and you and I are dead in this book, too. In at many times violent, sometimes escapist, always exquisitely rhythmic language, Smith takes us through a relationship of subject and object that is both relentless and crushingly tender. Smith makes language itself tender by co-constructing with the reader a chopping act of sound that is human sound in its basest form. And as well, Smith makes himself a vulnerable object, as he tells us how at once he found himself "in a place/ called ABSENCE" and we realize, that in the space of the book, we are there with him. The ABSENCE in Smith's book, however, is not empty. Instead, it is full of things and people. For, as Smith writes, "I found a sense of worthiness when I discovered/Others. I discovered a sense of living thru them, the dead/ the unknown." And the dead, that populate this book, are everywhere in the core of this ABSENCE, keeping us company in the midst of the terror and beauty that Smith nimbly creates, doing nothing more heroic than being the "ringing between our ears and the light/ in our eyes/fulfilled. You and me and them. Standing/ and buzzing, stilled."-Dorothea Lasky, author of AWELogan Ryan Smith's horse is Zukofsky's and Marx's, the pathetic emblem of the human; but maybe even more painfully, its efforts are just "laps," a spectacle for the viewers, who, in Smith's grandstands, are no less worked than the horses. The gun that signals the start of their labor completes the life, and labor, of the human. Humans & Horses is the lyric record of a life lived between the gun and the payoff and back. Along the way, it's a record full of friends, beers, architectures and, yes, records of the turntable variety. The horsepower in the book finds its expression in "ABSENSE," which I read as a comment on the true work of memory, as a translative force derived from sensory impressions. But not all is (Spicer-inflected)-fun and games: there's a sinister hand whose fingers stay on the trigger: "my sense of history / is a boss."