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Nancy Simpson's LIVING ABOVE THE FROST LINE, New and Selected Poems was published by Carolina Wren Press (N.C. Laureate Series, 2010.) She is the author of ACROSS WATER and NIGHT STUDENT, State Street Press, still available on WWW at Alibris and Books Again. Her poems have been published in Southern Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, The Georgia Review and other literary magazines. "Carolina Bluebirds" was published in THE POETS GUIDE TO THE BIRDS, Anhinga Press). "Grass" was reprinted in the 50th Anniversary Issue of Southern Poetry Review: DON'T LEAVE HUNGRY ( U.of Arkansas Press.) Seven poems were reprinted in the textbook, SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN POETRY,(McFarland.) Two poems were published in SOLO CAFE, Two more poems were published in SOLO NOVO."In the Nantahala Gorge" was published in Pisgah Review. "Studying Winter" was reprinted in Pirene's Fountain Anthology and "The Collection" in Collecting Life Anthology. Most recently, Southern Poetry Review Edited by James Smith, published "Our Great Depression," and The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. VII: NORTH CAROLINA,Edited by William Wright, reprinted "Leaving in the Dead of Winter."

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Living Above the Frost Line celebrates NATIONAL POETRY MONTH featuring poet  Robert S. King.

There will be more posts about this southern/appalachian poet and more of his poems during the month of April. Your comments are welcome.

Robert has published in hundreds of magazines, including The Kenyon Review, Southern Poetry Review, ELF: Eclectic Literary Forum, Midwest Quarterly, California Quarterly, Chariton Review, Negative Capability, The Hollins Critic, Blue Unicorn, Poem, Louisville Review, En Passant, Xanadu, Chattahoochee Review, The Cape Rock, Amelia, Slant, Sow's Ear, Windless Orchard, Great River Review, Visions Inter national, Writers' Forum, Lullwater Review, Permafrost, Habersham Review, Spoon River Poetry Review,The Bridge, Hellas, Hammers, Poetpourri, Grasslands Review, Lungfish Review, and other literary magazines.

Robert S. King is a native Georgian who grew up in the rural foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. He began writing poetry seriously after he was discharged from the U.S. Navy in 1972. Since then he has published several chapbooks and two full-length titles (see below).

Because poetry has never paid the bills, he has built a rather varied, and sometimes contradictory, résumé. To mention just a few jobs, he has been a Cambodian translator (U.S. Navy), a bookstore manager, a court reporter, an interlibrary loan manager, a technical editor, and a software engineer. He retired in 2010 and has been devoting himself full-time to writing, editing, and publishing poetry.
Robert is currently the Director of FutureCycle Press (www.futurecycle.org) and serves as President of the Georgia Poetry Society (www.georgiapoetrysociety.org).  Additionally, he is a member of  the Georgia Writers Association and the North Carolina Writers Network.

His chapbook titles are When Stars Fall Down as Snow (Garland Press, 1976), Dream of the Electric Eel (Wolfsong Publications, 1982), and Traveller’s Tale (Whistle Press, 1998).
Two full-length titles, The Hunted River and The Gravedigger’s Roots, were published by Shared Roads Press in 2009. 

From The Hunted River:


We are always dreaming our way back,
looking behind us to see the road
rolling up like a sleeping bag,
how the trees bend over it
as if they were trying to cover up where we’ve been.
Suddenly we feel our pulse rise like a flame,
the dust a red fire behind us.

The past burns slowly.
Its face is red.
Its gown is ash.
Cinders float from our backs and seem like travellers,
seem more than gray husks so slowly falling down.

--first published in The Habersham Review

Also from The Hunted River:


Tonight our silences walk together
in a cold slow motion
on the same abandoned road
where cricket mantras have replaced
ice clicks under logging wheels.

We go through the motions
toward thinner darkness,
our footprints deep in the road
our walks wear down.

Our feet obey the eyes navigating
a tunnel of trees bent over
a trail of ruts and holes
that could break a leg,
though we now know how to avoid a void,

we who once tried to fill the rifts
with laughing children,
with magic acts,
with house plans drawn in the dark.

Now ahead comes that distant window,
its warm hands of light
leaking out of the blinds
to touch our arrival.
But too like the cold we've come from,

a draft we name and drag in
to haunt the house,
an old wind to blow us further apart,
were we not both moths afloat
on yellow ropes of ghostlight.

We prefer to drift apart in place,
or orbit in the dark and comfort
of familiar pain, where ages hence
we may not remember our names, our lives,
if we ever truly had them,
only see how the light from our eyes ties together,
showing the way home somehow once again.

--first published by Neonbeam (U.K.)


Brenda Kay Ledford said...

I'm glad you're featuring Robert this month. I met him last Saturday at the Blue Ridge Writer's Conference. I like his poetry very much.

Glenda Beall said...

Robert King is a fine poet and I'm so happy he is here in our area.