Cypher Books will release Up Jump the Boogie by John Murillo, with a foreword by Martín Espada, on February 23, 2010 ($12.95, Paperback, 112 pages). Publication date: April 6, 2010.
Up Jump the Boogie is a series of lyrical dispatches from worlds hidden or denied. Murillo has survived every difficult scene in this book, transmuted each torn scrap of life into song with his skilled and compassionate alchemy. Meanings are woven from poem to poem as Murillo creates memories in his reader and then deftly evokes them, teaching her to feel what he has felt.
And his ambitions are no less than epic. He tells on one page of tragedy spanning continents and eras, and on the next plumbs the depths of personal loss, locking it all inextricably together in the 12-canto "Flowers for Etheridge," an ode to his poetic ur-father whose chant he carries on: "We free singers be." Murillo is a man who's been saved by poetry, and this is his book of rescue.
ADVANCE PRAISE"Up jumps the boogie. That's almost all one needs to say. Murillo is headbreakingly brilliant. I didn't have a favorite poet for this year: Now I do. But with this kind of verve and intelligence and ferocity Murillo just might be a favorite for many years to come." – Junot Díaz
"The feel of now lives in John Murillo's Up Jump the Boogie, but it's tempered by bows to the tradition of soulful music and oral poetry. The lived dimensions embodied in this collection say that here's an earned street knowledge and a measured intellectual inquiry that dare to live side by side, in one unique voice. The pages of Up Jump the Boogie breathe and sing; the tributes and cultural nods are heartfelt, and in these honest poems no one gets off the hook." – Yusef Komunyakaa
John Murillo is the current Jay C. and Ruth Halls Poetry Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. A graduate of New York University's MFA program in creative writing, he has also received fellowships from the New York Times, Cave Canem, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachussetts. He is a two-time Larry Neal Writers' Award winner and the inaugural Elma P. Stuckey Visiting Emerging Poet-in-Residence at Columbia College Chicago. His poetry has appeared in such publications as Callaloo, Court Green, Ploughshares, Ninth Letter, and the anthology Writing Self and Community: African-American Poetry After the Civil Rights Movement. Up Jump the Boogie is his first collection.
TITLE: UP JUMP THE BOOGIE
AUTHOR: John Murillo
PUBLICATION DATE: April 6, 2010
PRICE: $12.95, Paperback
DISTRIBUTOR: Small Press Distribution • 800-869-7553 • www.spdbooks.org