The Sweetest and the Meanest is drawn from the author's colorful life experiences of growing up in the Deep South, traveling the world, and exploring spiritual practices. Its poems are artful yet unadorned, portals leading to worlds just below the surface of everyday life.
In the words of his critically acclaimed peer, Pierce Pettis: "Tom does with poems what Eudora Welty did with short stories... sweet (but unsentimental), understated little slices of actual human life as experienced here in the South-or anywhere, for that matter. He puts you so close to those beauty/truth/goodness moments of the heart (the ones we've all known but defy description), that you're suddenly in them before you realize it. Like Eudora, he speaks softly, sneaks up on you-and then nails you. Wonderful stuff."