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Pandemic Evolution: Poets Respond to the Art of Matthew Wolfe

Pandemic Evolution:
Poets Respond to the Art of Matthew Wolfe


  • Art/Photography by Matthew Wolfe
  • Poems by 46 authors from the United States, Canada, India, and Wales
  • Edited by Hayley Mitchell Haugen

20% off cover price: $32.00

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Details: 8.5×8.5, 316 pages, color art


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MATTHEW WOLFE is an artist, musician, and writer who considers the kaleidoscope one of the most underappreciated inventions of all time. He also likes cats. Wolfe studied early fifteenth-century British manuscript art as part of his doctoral work on Chaucer manuscripts at West Virginia University. That is the extent of his formal studies in art. As a visual artist, Wolfe has cut two of his “World Heart” paintings into small pieces, made them into Valentine cards, and then mailed them to friends, family, and strangers all over the United States (2 paintings remain intact – for now). 
Wolfe’s writing has appeared in Newsweek, Writer’s Digest, Yellow Medicine Review, Animus, Motif, and The Chaucer Review. He was the recipient of the 2005 West Virginia Artist Fellowship for his memoir writing. That project resulted in his book, The Way It Was. His other books include Ms. Scrooge: A Christmas Ghost Story; Gentle Snow, a short story collection; and most recently, a book of humor: The Future’s So Bright, My Third Eye Needs Shade. Wolfe lives in Random, West Virginia.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Welcome to the mental attic space of 46 humans during a very difficult time in their lives, a global pandemic. This is a space filled with images and poetry. It is a collaboration without a detailed blueprint, yet it grew, morphed, and evolved for nearly a year, even as a virus stunted much of the world. This space is now a testament. It is flower bud waiting to bloom in the hands of anyone willing to read, look, and ponder its petals. The miracle? It creates a different blossom for each person who opens the covers of this simple book. 
 It began when an addled artist decided to mark the first days of the natural catastrophe by taking a single photo each day after the pandemic was officially declared. After each shoot, he would post the photo on the Internet and assumed that would be the end of it. Enter one visionary publisher who saw a book, a different sort of book. She imagined a volume of poems with the daily images, and, sent out a call for poems inspired by the photographs. Dozens of poets dutifully sat down, added their visions to the photos, and created new dimensions for the collection of images. In the end, 46 poets brought their own souls to bare on the visual bulletin board, as it were. And now, we welcome you to enter this space, light a candle, and pick out that flower that awaits you between the covers of Pandemic Evolution.

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