Synopses & Reviews
Poetry. A finalist for the national book award, this extraordinary book of poems demonstrates Fairchild's "elegance and restrained subtlety" as he "weaves topics that become something like musical themes including the central theme of machine work" according to Anthony Hecht's introduction of the book. R.S. Gwynn says the book "measures a world inhabited by constant subtraction, like the raw metal being hewn into shape by the lathes, both real and metaphorical, that figure so prominently in this collection." Fairchild has the ability to isolate scenes of beauty that at first seem mundane and ordinary, and to champion the simple work and lives of simple people without a hint of either condescension or undue mythmaking.
B.H. Fairchild’s The Art of the Lathe is a collection of poems centering on the working-class world of the Midwest, the isolations of small-town life, and the possibilities and occasions of beauty and grace among the machine shops and oil fields of rural Kansas.