Bredle's a poet I genuinely look forward to reading, a talker, a good talker where sometimes he's moping around or jumping up and down or hiding behind personified images of Apocalypse but I keep on following him around, a sad sack and the lonely wind, who is who, I don't know. My admiration for Bredle, especially in this, his debut collection, is how I'm sometimes tired of his listing, his kaleidoscope of images and memories, his lengthiness, yet I can't seem to not care, to give up, to put the damn book down. There's something endearing about the voice that I can't quite explain (YET?). Having read a good deal of his later work first (Smiles of the Unstoppable is unstoppable), I can say while he's certainly matured in his talkative ways, the core guts of the poems still wanders. And thank the goodness for that!
from "While Anne Reads a Lengthy Poem About Her Grandmother's Funeral and Our Mortality"
I'm reminded of some details Bill told me
about his aunt's funeral in Memphis a few years
ago--a paraplegic whose casket somehow
got tipped on its side while being lowered
into the grave during a thunderstorm. The pallbearers,
Bill included, were forced into the mud
in an attempt to turn the casket right side
up, digging and clawing their way in and out
of the hole, slopping around for an audience
of bereft women in black dresses and red
hats. Finally they gave up and left her
on her side, creeping away in their Cadillacs and ruined
suits, the wives angry at the husbands.