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In This Quiet Church of Night, I Say Amen

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4.59  ·  Rating details ·  34 ratings  ·  10 reviews
“In In This Quiet Church of Night, I Say Amen, Kelly’s poems are crafting the next new reality, because what-ever duende would have had to offer, in terms of wisdom, has passed. Each poem is a breakup with nostalgia. Each poem is an invitation to the reader to accompany him in his search, to be conflicted with him and to come to terms with the burden of creating new normal ...more
Paperback, 114 pages
Published November 13th 2017 by Civil Coping Mechanisms (first published November 7th 2017)
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Janie C.
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Poetry that breathes existence into words and crosses borders of interconnectedness into the lonely spaces that wistfully dream of the past, agitate over tomorrow and embrace intimacy unbound. Beautiful, intimately honest and ethereally life-affirming.
Bud Smith
Nov 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Hands down one of the finest American poets working today.

This is Kelly's best book of poems to date, which is nice to see. A mix of deeply heartfelt poems that touch on mortality, love, friendship, and hope when it might otherwise seem beyond grasp.
Barton Smock
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
‘…Father turns his head, I think,
to watch me, & this goes on forever.’ – {from} The Wind In Galway

With confession’s nostalgia for the crystal ball, Devin Kelly’s In This Quiet Church Of Night, I Say Amen gives away blood’s belongings and yawns itself over a lived-in kindness known maybe once or twice to you as a child when clicking you went with your bones through the sigh of a strange house the morning after a sleepover. This is a precise and expansive poetry, a poetry of scope and spotlight, s
...more
Mike
Jan 24, 2018 added it
The blurb on the back cover of this book says that it "hurts the way life hurts." I think that's true, but incomplete. Kelly's poems are, I think, grappling with the truth that the only that which you love can hurt you, that both the past and the future are fragile, that life always has in it the specter of death. But that's incomplete, too, because I believe that there is a fundamental joy underlying these realizations, and that the poems sit in a place between light and dark, never fully turni ...more
John Taylor
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
This is a powerful book of poems. I am so impressed by Kelly's ability to move through a narrative right at the threshold between the known and the unknown. The threshold between pain and pleasure; family and vacancy; fear and love; life and death. Rarely does the poet fully enter one of these rooms, but walks decidedly along the border between them.

The poems take on issues of loss and family with such discernment and tenderness that it is a relief to read them, to find this companion in grief.
Allison
Dec 01, 2019 rated it liked it
I wasn’t as enamored with this as I expected to be, but I enjoyed the poems titled “Fractions,” “If It’s Raining There,” “Nightlight,” and “Last Night George and I Stood Outside” quite a lot. Most of the time reading this though, I was underwhelmed. I can’t quite put my finger on the reason. Maybe it’s the narrative stance of the poems (many are written from a “we” perspective that feels far from intimate). Maybe it’s how the speaker’s dad being called “father” struck me as inauthentic (and how ...more
Carly Miller
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
It's easy to get swept up in the current of language Kelly creates. The collection feels like a stack of letters in the best way: What a joy to have them arrive, with their sound and story, and linger over again and again.
Carla Sofia Sofia
Aug 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a dreamy and thoughtful book, beautiful in how it holds the ordinary as sacred. I've long loved Devin's poems and this is a wonderful debut. Eager to read more from him.
M.K. Rainey
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Love this beautiful book & all of Kelly's writing! ...more
Meher
Apr 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry, 2019
The kind of book that snaps your heart and sutures it back together
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Devin Kelly is a writer and high school teacher living in New York City. He is the winner of a Best of the Net Prize, and his writing has appeared in Longreads, The Guardian, LitHub, and more. He is the author of two books of poetry, including "In This Quiet Church of Night, I Say Amen."

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