Ibbetson Street Press founder Doug Holder will be releasing a new collection of his poetry this summer (2008) through the Cervena Barva Press (http://cervenabarvapress.com ) "The Man In The Booth In The Midtown Tunnel"
Here is a review from Luke Salisbury author of the award winning novel "Hollywood and Sunset," and a Professor of English at Bunker Hill Community College ( Boston):
The Man In The Booth in The Midtown Tunnel
Doug Holder is a very funny man and a very funny poet, but his new collection is much more than funny. There’s a profound seriousness in this book. Holder deals with his past and sometimes sour present. He doesn’t spare us the intensity and craziness he sees and feels around him. The title poem, a very fine poem, catches the fears and wonders of a New York childhood. I also felt loneliness, fear and a tantalizing feeling of being trapped in a grown-up world riding through the Midtown Tunnel.
Another poem speaks of “A bus full of exiles.” We’re all on that bus and Holder doesn’t let us off until we have shared his feelings of desolation and even madness everywhere from “effete ivied walls” to the wards of MacLean Hospital, stopping off for some of “The Love Life Of J. Edgar Hoover (The poem is everything you hope and expect it will be –“Mother downstairs/Off her rocker”), to “Killing Time at The 99” which has the fine lines “And drink/To all/This/Loneliness/Made visible” (Great lines I think), to “hoping/there/is/still/someone/out there” when using the “Pay Phones On The Boston Common” to final observations of a “Rat’s Carcass.”
The collection isn’t depressing. It’s alive. Alive with vitality, ugliness, sadness, sex, even love. It’s all here. This is Holder’s best to date.