In this lovely collection of poems, one could almost refer to them as meditations or contemplations, Martin Willitts, Jr helps us to see time and our relation to it in fresh ways. Present, past, and future create a fresh music. We feel as if we’re hearing it for the first time and yet it is also familiar. His work here reminds me of ancient Chinese poets, Tomas Transtromer, and Jean Valentine. A strong book of poems should leave us wanting to return to it again and again. Martin Willitts, Jr’s book does that.
Martin Willitts Jr. is a retired Librarian living in Syracuse, New York. He is a visual artist of Victorian and Chinese paper cutouts. He was nominated for 15 Pushcart and 13 Best of the Net awards. He provided his hands-on workshop “How to Make Origami Haiku Jumping Frogs” at the 2012 Massachusetts Poetry Festival and the 2015 Amherst Poetry Festival.
Winner of the 2012 Big River Poetry Review’s William K. Hathaway Award; 2013 Bill Holm Witness Poetry Contest; 2013 “Trees” Poetry Contest; 2014 Broadsided award; 2014 Dylan Thomas International Poetry Contest; Rattle Ekphrastic Challenge, June 2015, Editor’s Choice; Rattle Ekphrastic Challenge, Artist’s Choice, November 2016, Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Prize, 2018. He won a Central New York Individual Artist Award and provided “Poetry on The Bus” which had 48 poems in local buses including 20 bi-lingual poems from 7 different languages.