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Shadows Within the Roaring Fork

November 10, 2017


Shadows Within the Roaring Fork extends the range and enriches the substance of Jared Smith’s visionary poetry. While many American poets register their personal psychic stresses by embracing fragmentation, discontinuity, and easy ironies, Smith’s approach is coherent, wide-ranging, unabashedly direct, and fiercely humane. Like Blake, Whitman, Jeffers, and Thomas McGrath, Jared Smith refuses to speak just for himself: in these poems, the personal and the transpersonal form a kind of confluence, each stream joining and energizing the other. This is necessary poetry—the kind that offers readers the gift of realizing they are necessary as well.
– Joseph Hutchison, Colorado Poet Laureate


Jared Smith has long been one of the chief torchbearers of American poetry, navigating a variety of social, political, and existential themes, and consistently via a voice that is uniquely his.
– John Amen, Editor and Publisher of The Pedestal Magazine


Jared Smith’s dazzling poetry brings to mind one word above all: generosity. Generosity of the human spirit and mind, of the word, and of the connectedness that binds human to human, human to nature, and nature to the larger universe. As he puts it: ‘”It is just these littlest things now / that carry light across the universe / and make life of it. You know.” We know, but we also urgently need the poet to remind us, now more than ever. Our country, our language, and our globe are enriched by this vibrant, powerful, unflinching poet.
– Eleanor Goodman, Translator of Iron Moon: An Anthology of Chinese Worker Poetry


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Jared Smith

Jared Smith is the author of thirteen volumes of poetry, two CDs, and multi-media stage presentations in New York and Chicago. He is Poetry Editor of Turtle Island Quarterly, and has served on the Editorial Boards of leading literary magazines, including The New York Quarterly, Home Planet News, and The Pedestal Magazine. He has also served on the Board of Directors of literary and arts non-profits in New York, Illinois, and Colorado. He is a former Director of Education and Research for an international research institute, as well as former advisor to several White House Commissions under President Bill Clinton, and Special Appointee to Argonne National Laboratory. He has served on the faculty of New York University, LaGuardia Community College, and Illinois Institute of Technology. Jared currently lives outside Boulder, Colorado and spends much of his time at an unimproved log cabin deep in Roosevelt National Forest where the nearest neighbors are bears, elk, and moose.