Artist Poetry Books Are Now Available!

ANDREW CALDERON

 

Andrew Calderon’s words fill the page with the intensity of a rap anthem. His rhymes are both playful and finely crafted. They leave the reader smiling in wonderful amazement at both their creative flair and their depth. Like a pop song that has become a timeless classic, Calderon’s poems evoke nostalgia tempered by the gritty reality of the past. 
- Michael Rembis, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of History Director, Center for Disability Studies and Co-editor of (Dis)Integration


The words in Calderon’s poems seem to punch off the page in a tense rapping style with a balanced mixture of power and poignancy.  They are often angry but it is not the kind of anger that leaves the recipient cringing or feeling guilty.  In A Teeny Tiny Bit about Myself, the litany of hurts and insults: “I was the slow one at school A retard An idiot A dim wit – A fool” ends with a positive burst of certainty and self-esteem: “Nowhere near Where I am Today.”  This is a writer with astute observations about life around him and a solid grasp of emotive language. He takes his experiences, “One heart ache at a time,” and uses them to recognize his own worth “From The First To The Very Last Event – Reciting Out Loud The Poetic Words I Meant.”  
-Jennifer Gold is an author of children’s picture books Top Leaf and Yes! I Knew the Queen and a radio and magazine journalist.  

 

KELLY EVANS

 

Another Light is aptly titled. It is a collection of sparks, insights into the self,    underbellies revealed, vulnerable, a fast paced glimpse at the soul. The poet   illuminates dark corners then whisks the light away and lets the shadows settle in—loss, love, sadness, joy, celebration, and realization. They speak truths.  
-Lorna Czarnota MacDonald, author of Breadline Blue; Legends, Lore and Secrets of WNY; and Dancing at the Crossroads

 

Kelly Evans' drawings tend toward two moods. One is of a sort of performed cool, as in her renditions of musicians like David Bowie and Marc Almond.  The figures calmly pose, as cool does, aware but not flaunting.  In other drawings, the mood is more of tenderness and vulnerability.  The figures seem to dwell in thought, their body language more slack, eyes more alert.  Even in non-figurative work, this combination of matter-of-fact cool and pleading openness seems present in the mix of stern lines, thinly scratched-in detail, and sparse or absent backgrounds.  In their pairing, these two moods illustrate distant but related mindsets: one of projected confidence and one of reflective reservation.
-Kyle Butler, Visual Artist, Art Curator, and Assistant Professor of Fine Arts, 
Villa Maria College

 

Kelly Evan’s poems beg the reader to not make assumptions, to observe, to go deeper and realize that we are all capable of being loved, being in love and of being hurt.  These poignant poems are full of surprises.  In Blue Jay she asks bird to sing a song and show her the way.   In I Was Wrong she berates herself and feels ridiculous as so many women do for trusting someone she loved. In Love is Pitter Patter Gone she plays delightfully with colors and questions.  As well as writing poetry, Evans is an artist of some merit.  Her well defined pencil drawings show us a complex woman who is strong, playful, caring and vulnerable.  Evans’s poems and her drawings are brave in their awareness of the unpredictability and sometimes cruelty of life, “it’s a confusing, heartless world we live in” she writes in Room Slave.  But we can be sure that Evans will never give up. Her words are honest and she has given us poems that we should all read to remind ourselves that we are flawed and that we need to have more compassion for each other.  
-Jennifer Gold, author of Yes! I Knew the Queen and Top Leaf 

 

Whether it is the sullen and mysterious tones of “Room Slave” or “Wooden Flies,” or the playful melody of “In the Middle,” Kelly Evans’ work provokes both thought and emotion. Its beauty and complexity make the reader demand more, with each new reading calling forth deeper meaning. Evans’ unique blend of hopefulness and deep introspection demands attention.
- Michael Rembis, Ph.D., Assoc. Professor, Department of History Director,  Center for Disability Studies, Univ. of Buffalo, and Co-editor of (Dis)Integration