Michael Beadle is the author of four poetry chapbooks, a poetry CD, and three books on historic photographs of Haywood County in western North Carolina. His poetry has been published in various journals and anthologies such as The New Southerner, Sow’s Ear, Great Smokies Review, and Kakalak. His latest chapbook, Primer (Main Street Rag, 2017), was a finalist in the 2016 Cathy Smith Bowers Chapbook Contest. In 2012, Michael was selected as a poet-in-residence at the North Carolina Zoo. For the past several years, Michael has been an emcee for the N.C. Poetry Out Loud state finals and served as statewide coordinator of student poetry contests for the NC Poetry Society. For nearly 20 years, he’s performed original, contemporary, and classical poetry in schools, festivals, libraries, churches and other venues. As a touring writer-in-residence, he teaches creative writing workshops for students and teachers throughout North Carolina, including the Duke Young Writers’ Camp at Duke University. An A+ Schools Fellow since 1999, Michael has taught dozens of arts integration workshops in North Carolina, as well as Michigan, Oklahoma and Iowa.
Lifting each rock,
we felt its weight in our palms,
closed our eyes
until a name arose….
Even as a child, as the first poem in Beasts of Eden reveals, Michael Beadle took upon himself the joyous burden of naming even the all-too-often unnamable things of this world.
In this new collection, Beadle lures us into a realm of fact and fantasy, of history and myth, where we are all—at once—both native and stranger, neighbor and trespasser. With senses so alert to the sounds, the tastes, the textures, the sights, and smells of this world, nothing escapes the fresh wit and seasoned wisdom of this big-hearted poet.
Here is a poet who wields a magician’s pen that is both worldly and colloquial, as at home in the past as it is in the present. Give yourself—and everyone you love—the gift of this beautiful new collection.
—Cathy Smith Bowers, former Poet Laureate of North Carolina and author of The Collected Poems of Cathy Smith Bowers