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Distributed for Carnegie Mellon University Press

Dark Harvest

New and Selected Poems, 2001–2020

Powerful poems about men and women at the margins.

Dark Harvest showcases two decades of Joseph Millar’s finest poetic work, including his beloved and award-winning poems centered on the unseen men and women at the margins of American life. Millar's poems don’t favor beauty over suffering, nor do they reach for knowledge over mystery—instead, his words carry forward their Whitmanic imperatives: to turn away from nothing, to be awash in contradictions.

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"Supremely sensory, everything in a Joseph Millar poem shimmers with authenticity. His is a hard-earned sensibility without a wisp of pretense. Unsurprisingly, the new poems are again spectacularly good: calmly visionary while tethered to the rough and ready. Millar’s poems give shape to the bounty of plenty and the abundance of loss in a faulty world. One comes away knowing and, yes, feeling more of what it is to be fully awake. Dark Harvest is a book to keep at hand."

Marvin Bell

"Wandering the narrow alleyways of these poems, into the bottomlands, I think of a Midrashic teaching someone told me: God made the world because he desired a dwelling place in the lowest realm. Why not here, among Millar’s vagabonds and crows, his fishermen, trash fires and salt, 'the restless claws of the ocean / turning the pebbles and rocks and sand, / tumbling the chitin and shell fragments / ceaselessly and forever...'"

Danusha Lameris, author of Bonfire Opera

"Joseph Millar’s new and selected is a feast of a book; epic in span, intimate in approach. With a deep lyric sensibility, Millar elevates the lives of 'ordinary' Americans into the matter of the sublime. He weaves the quotidian and ineffable into a love real and true." 

Chris Abani, author of Sanctificum and Smoking the Bible

"Discovering this work is like finding an old wooden crate filled with pristine hand grenades. Each of these poems can shatter you in multiple directions simultaneously."

Peter Coyote, author, actor, and Zen Buddhist Priest

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