What a great premise for an anthology! And it succeeds, both in its celebration of our crazy culture and its fascinating analysis, through the poems, of popular myths that have stood the test of time. -Kliatt In the past few decades, poetry about and around popular culture has become a very hip contemporary art form. Real Things is a collection of over 150 poems by more than 130 poets who themselves represent the cultural diversity of the United States. With subjects ranging from the influence of Mickey Mouse on child-raising to the relationship of Barbie to sex in America, from the societal effects of the movie Psycho to our fascination with dirty politics and Ralph Kramden, the poems in this anthology question and celebrate the attitudes that our society shares.
Among JIM ELLEDGE's ten books are four collections of his poetry, most recently Into the Arms of the Universe which won the 1995 Stonewall competition for gay and lesbian poets; four volumes of literary criticism; and Sweet Nothings: An Anthology of Rock and Roll in American Poetry, also published by Indiana University Press. Professor of English at Illinois State University, he teaches in that department's creative writing program and is director/editor of Thorngate Road, a press. Susan Swartwout is Assistant Professor of English at Southeast Missouri State University where she teaches creative writing and literature. She also serves on the editorial staff of The Cape Rock and advises the student literary magazine, Journey. Her two collections of poetry are entitled Freaks and Uncommon Ground, and she has poems published in literary journals such as Nebraska Review, The Cape Rock, Mississippi Review, Negative Capability, and Spoon River Poetry Review.