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Poets Weave

“Bonfire” By Chris Mattingly

Louisville, Kentucky native, Mattingly reads "Bonfire," "Mom Explains the Scar on Her Wrist," and "Wake for the Stepdaddy that Never Married My Mother."


Photo: mhaithaca (flickr/fotopedia)

"Out back of the house, mom and me are feeding a fire. / Furniture broken from a fight..." -from "Bonfire"

“Poetry is not a luxury.”
–Audre Lorde

Chris Mattingly of Louisville, Kentucky, is the author of A Light for Your Beckon (translations of Anglo Saxon riddles) and the forthcoming Scuffletown from Typecast Publishing.  His poems have lately appeared in Lumber Yard, Still, Louisville Review, Sawmill, and Forklift, Ohio.

Chris holds an MFA in poetry from Spalding University, cultivates a great big garden, plays the banjo, sometimes travels ridiculous distances for good burgoo and chess pie, and is the eighth-generation Mattingly to live in Kentucky.

On this extended edition of The Poets Weave, Chris reads “Bonfire,” “Mom Explains the Scar on Her Wrist,” and “Wake for the Stepdaddy that Never Married My Mother.”

  • Faith Gordy

    What else is there to say other than: I have never heard, or read, such an emotional poem. It is hard to imagine that 19 year old son in that position as my youngest is now 20. I pray that no child should endure that pain and yet it continues to be a way of learning for so many of them. Thank you Chris Mattingly for sharing such a sincere piece of yourself. You are an amazing writer, professor, and mentor.

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