June 20, 2009

Review by Keith Woodruff

by David Ray

Backwaters Press
3502 North 52nd St.
Omaha, NE 68104-3506
ISBN 0978578244
2006, 364 pp., $25.00

I like to think David Ray is somewhere making a poem about Sacramento’s tent city. By the latest count, it is home to approximately 400 families who’ve fallen on hard times. Having spent the last three months with Music of Time: Selected and New Poems, I think he’s the one to give voice to their plight. In a recent news report Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson says he can foresee making the tent city permanent, but not on its current site—the banks of the American River. “We need tough love, meaning we have to be compassionate to this population. I am very committed to it. I feel we have a moral obligation.” No doubt with a heavy sigh, Johnson cautions the city must eventually adopt a “zero tolerance” approach to the river-side campsite. Or maybe Ray’s putting together a sonnet around AIG’s breathtaking cupidity and this sickening bonus orgy. I think these folks, who Dubya once called “the haves and the have-mores,” also need some tough love. Some zero tolerance.

Continue reading

Rattle Logo