Winner of the Maurice English Poetry Award
(Wesleyan University Press)
"Heartbreaking poems...praise the cycle of life, acknowledge the power of death and express the love of a father for his son."
—Andy Brumer, New York Times Book Review
"I admire Ray's honesty and directness, but that he should also be able to make poems out of his grief...is a tribute to the steely-nerved artist in him...Sam's Book will stand out among books of contemporary poetry."
--Roger Mitchell, Prairie Schooner
Had we known
these few images
were all we'd have of you
we'd have been taking
pictures all the time.
The one I need to forget
—to stop weeping, to live—
is the one in my mind
Another Trick of the Mind
Out of a book, a little trick—
Instead of the picture and much longing
for that lost face,
place yourself within the frame.
You are back together again, if only
in the past or in the dream,
or this gilded picture in mind.
But it is no longer a dream or a picture
of loss. And then you go on,
down the road you have to go, together.