Many of the book's pleasures are the surprises.
Delp has a genuine artfulness-his literary chops are such that he is co-editor of the series-and you can see that in the way he uses language to suggest so much more than is there on the page. As If We Were Prey is a rather short book of short stories that al fly by quickly, which is to the author's credit.
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
The quick read is not due only to Delp's fine-tuned pace, which is fuly intact here, but to the universality of the subject: the fault and folly of men. As it is within each narrative, there's a story arc that curves from the beginning to the end of the collection itself, a chronological frame that attempts to capture some essence of men in several of life's phases. That we are left with such a consideration is exemplary of the clever short fiction Delp shows he is more than capable of. Many of this book's pleasures are the surprises.
Delp has a genuine artfulness - his literary chops are such that he is co-editor of the series - and you can see that in the way he uses language to suggest so much more than is there on the page.
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In understated prose that remarkably says more in one sentence that many writers do in a paragraph, Delp takes us inside the head and hearts of his male characters, all of whom share a certain melancholy, both eerie and familiar, all in a style reminiscent of another up-north renowned author, Jim Harrison. Delp writes in a simple and easy style.
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Al of the men he writes about are flawed in some way and how they forge their way through life is at the crux of the collection. There are a lot of short story writers who accomplish mush less than what Michael Delp does in such an amazingly short span. As If We Were Prey tells the stories of several men who under the pressures of life are taken to their limit as they try to make their way through life and all of its tiresome and stressful ways.
And the influence of the glacier which carved out the lakes is always looming in my head.
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The Upper Peninsula is a ghost place to me to…filled with memories of wet canvas tents, fires, wandering along Superior although I did not do it enough as a kid. The Midwest is also about living close to the land, knowing farmers from the small town where I grew up.
A Midwestern Gentleman knows how to eat in a chi-chi restaurant but can walk out and change a fan belt on his car if necessary. A Midwestern Gentleman should be able to fish and hunt if necessary, love bad weather and own the gear it takes to survive it with a certain joy. He should know where his food comes from and should seek his sense of the world by looking up past the roads and traffic and into the deeper parts of the landscape which, hopefully, sustains him. A Midwestern Gentleman has a suit, knows how to wear it well, but usually chooses otherwise.
And this:. A Midwestern Gentleman is not swayed by passing fads, nonsense and anything akin to snobbery or false pride.
Collection of short stories 'As If We Were Prey' is rooted in Michigan's masculinity
This guy, the Mad Angler, is genuine pissmad at what is being done in the name of profit to our natural resources, especially our water. He is also just plain mad, someone who has run amuck, escaped the bin, resists all authority and always moves against any grain. My nickname, given by close friends is Mad Dog…for several valid reasons. Never thought I was meant to be a writer but the inclination came early in grade school.
Poetry at Literati: Michael Delp, Zilka Joseph, M.L. Liebler
I read poetry, listened to the lyrics of songs I loved and carried those things into my adult life. I will hang up the pen any time I ask myself, would you rather write or fish? Dumb question. These last 10 years I have tried to fish more, write more intensely when I binge write which is how I write, and just be more attentive, more awake.
Read Harrison or Matthiessen or Snyder or Mary Oliver and you see you have not looked very closely at the whole world. The old saying about Zen goes this way when applied to fishing and to everything else: the only Zen on the mountaintop is the Zen you bring with you. I seek to enter the river and disappear, vanish in the current and the reflection of the sky. I have never written a poem on the river but have been gifted by the influence of those which are often incoming, at least I their initial impulse. The impulse comes first and then the storm starts.
If I am patient and bounce it back to my subconscious until it festers, it usually comes out whole. It is just like watching a baby being born.
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All of a sudden it is there in front of you. Although I enjoy, to some degree, new fly water, I much prefer the bends and environs in front of my cabin. As If We Were Prey. In this Book. Additional Information.
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A dark, rollicking collection of stories about men prone to foolishness trying to make their way in a modern world. Table of Contents. Cover Download Save. Contents p.