The Devil’s Radio by Jacob Rakovan
ABOUT THE BOOK
Jacob Rakovan’s The Devil’s Radio broadcasts the elegies of so many, in a voice that lies down with them in their graves, touches their bones, and knows their stories. Cast against a backdrop of Appalachia in exile, Rakovan’s collection of poems mines the dark veins of life, love, and death.
1st Printing: Small Doggies Press 2013.
Small Doggies Press Trade Paperback Edition, October 2013
Edited by: Carrie Seitzinger
Cover Design by: Matty Byloos
Cover Layout by: Olivia Croom
Interior Layout by: Olivia Croom
Type set in Celestia.
Distribution: Small Press Distribution.
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PRAISE FOR THE DEVIL’S RADIO
Jacob Rakovan’s chilling debut is deftly crafted on fervent currents of restlessness and shadow. These are stanzas you can’t turn away from—there’s just no way to mitigate these stark narratives of loss, no way to deny that these poems shatter our realities in ways that are definitive and revelatory.
—Patricia Smith, author of Shoulda Been Jimi Savannah, Blood Dazzler, Teahouse of the Almighty, Close to Death, Big Towns, Big Talk, and Life According to Motown
Urgently tender and elegiac, The Devil’s Radio not only howls and hurts good, but also sings toward healing with a persistence that is life-affirming and devotional. With language and music that are oak-aged in exile and the deeply felt memory of Appalachia, these poems burn deliciously and relentlessly through the body and mind. Faced with the impossible wreckage of loss, of death after death, of trying to be a good man and father while staring down the thieving threat of graves, Rakovan employs a fairytale-like logic to reinvent elegy, to make sense of the senseless, to knock the grinning face off that “sonofabitch” death and give the dead and living back their wonder.
—Stevie Edwards, author of Good Grief
American ghosts have to make up a song to sing as they weave their flight through our ruins—rural and industrial both. Few people care to listen to the horror and beauty of that chorus. In his debut collection, however, Rakovan tunes into this awesome and terrible ruckus, crafts for us a gothic ballad and rust-blade curse, the psalm plugged into a banged up tweed amp, elegy after elegy, eros, tenderness, fable and praise. After centuries of private wreckage and public forgetting, there is a poet composing something to make sense of it all and the sounds are playing on The Devil’s Radio.
—Patrick Rosal, author of My American Kundiman and Uprock, Headspin, Scramble and Dive
EXCERPTS FROM THE DEVIL’S RADIO
Poetry Suite @ NAILED Magazine, featuring 5 poems.
REVIEWS OF THE DEVIL’S RADIO