ben gantcher / poems 

Snow Farmer is out. Here’s what they’re saying about it:

“In his brilliant collection, Snow Farmer, Benjamin Gantcher discusses this relationship to place with the kind of fresh imagery and fun wordplay that bring a setting to life…” Read the rest of Benjamin Schmitt’s review at At the Inkwell.

“Wild and generous, Ben Gantcher is a poet’s poet: the verse line is his trampoline and galactic probe. There’s the incandescent playfulness of a Flann O’Brien, but also the philosophical reflex of a Zbigniew Herbert…[U]nder the shape-shifting surge of forms, his book might be a book-length poem, building with a sure sense of structure. Snow Farmer is brilliant.”—D. Nurkse

“Like an Apollinaire from Brooklyn, Gantcher writes poems that are bombastic in their full-ahead slippery-ness and their love of the elaborate and the mundane. I gladly followed him through landscapes imaginary and municipal. His language will both welcome and astonish you. It is fluid and dreamy. It is perfectly of its time and place.”—Matthew Rohrer

“In Gantcher’s poems, words appear scrubbed of age and habit and exhaustion, as if they had only just been invented. Twisted together in unexpected ways, funny but not just funny, both caustic and beautiful, they wake you up and remind you how pleasurable it is to pay attention.”—Larissa MacFarquhar

“‘I paused at the crest of the rise…/ in time to see… / the trails in the tall grasses spelling thirst,’ Gantcher writes in Snow Farmer and these are thirsty poems: thirsty for the world, hungry for knowledge, for experience, for love; poems full of the wild beating of an ‘insatiable heart [which] would break and spill and eat its chewed-up meat again.’ Thoughtful, questioning, proclamatory, clever, ruthless, tender and meditative—this is a highly-assured debut whose poems come together to form, as Gantcher says elsewhere of others, ‘an essential constellation.’”—Kate Angus


Doctor Caliban

The rain has let up, but a mist is reaching through the lighted spaces between the trees, which are weeping, fine, but they don’t mean anything by it, if they’re crying for anyone, it’s themselves, but not really, they know you’re watching. Apartments with eyes open and full of their own light, i.e., vulnerable and ripe, are tugging at him. They unroll along the street like the slotted scroll of a player piano, arranged in a rhythm he can almost read. He gives a little snort in thanks for this empty nighttime and slips inside the elevator.

Click here to see two visual translations of Doctor Caliban poems by my friend Charles Luce.

Strings of Math and Custom

Beard of Bees Press published my chapbook in 2013 . You can print or download it and, like all Beard of Bees publications, it’s “freely redistributable.”