Bad Ideas by Michael V. Smith
Coming in May 2017, paperback
Nobody knows bad ideas quite like Michael V. Smith. In his new collection of poetry, he speaks to an intangibility of sense, or a sense beyond the rational. Bad Ideas explores the inevitability of loss and triumph with characteristic irony and tenderness. Through this dazzling collection of a remembered life, hung out to ogle like laundry on the line, Smith recalls a mother who discovers a sex tape, a man who dreams of birthing his own son and a woman who blends her baby girls into milkshakes.
Bad Ideas is a testament to how an altered perspective effects change, how stories can be recast. The collection forms itself into an exercise in which optimism is a practised art recaptured in dreams and prayers and combined to acknowledge the unknowable, the contradictory, the ungraspable:
"An evening is composed / in a hundred unchoreographed / dramas";
"I pull a Clark Kent / transform, dressed as a monk / in burgundy and gold robes. I think / this will protect me, but it doesn't";
"Dear Hatred, sweet / Hatred, do you not move our enemies / to know us better?"
Hyperbolic and sincere, this collection brawls with the unquantifiable themes of family, loneliness and love.