Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret among contemporary American writers.--John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Northern Lights

Northern Lights x 2



Here's a new digital picture by my daughter Rebecca, who finished up a second year in filmmaking at Bard College and is soon going off to The Center for Cartoon Studies. Northern Lights. See more here. To go with it, here's a poem of mine (published last April) that has to do with the northern lights. There's a podcast of my reading of the poem as well.

He lives in a bowling alley!

Managing editor of Weird Fiction Review and copy editor of Cheeky Frawg e-books, Adam Mills reviews "Childe Phoenix" in a roundup piece (you can read the entire roundup here):
“Prolegomenon to the Adventures of Childe Phoenix” by Marly Youmans: Lightspeed Magazine recently reprinted this story, which I enjoyed immensely. It’s a coming of age story, more or less, that uses its fabulism and imagery as an extension of the protagonist’s emotional state. His father is an alchemist, his mother is a ghost, his sister lies in a glass coffin in suspended animation, and the house is falling apart around them. The sheer strangeness and poignancy of it is what keeps you reading. In a way, it reminded me of the intense emotional fantasy of some of Bruno Schulz’s stories.
The thing that I loved about this tiny review (aside from the fact that I am compared to Bruno Schulz) is that it made me see my own story in a new light; I had not thought of the mother as a ghost, not at all, but I can see that it works as a way to read the story--and certainly her nature is just as strange, appearing and disappearing without rhyme or reason, and as helpless to stop what she does not like.

4 comments:

  1. A filmmaking daughter! Something we have in common.

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  2. More than one thing, I am quite certain!

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  3. What a lovely work by your daughter, and your poem with it! Talents abound in your family, not surpisingly.

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  4. Thanks, Marja-Leena--

    She has a lot of interests and is a good writer. It'll be interesting to see what becomes of her talents.

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Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.