Reviews & Other Notes:

A Broken Escalator Still Isn’t the Stairs


* Judges comments on A Broken Escalator Still Isn’t the Stairs by 2010 Concrete Wolf Chapbook Series judge James Bertolino (author of Finding Water, Holding Stone):

While these often elegant prose poems are much about what is absent, missing, many are rich with physical detail: spores, palm stalks, snowflake crystals, prickly-pear, snakeskin and bacteria all appear in a single poem.  The tension between emptiness and palpable presence is further energized by the use of the ampersand (&) instead of the word “and.”  It’s as though the gnarly ampersand indicates where “and” is missing.  Key lines such as “Neurons pop like an invasion” and “Walls tell the same story in every room” help us grasp both an intensity of consciousness and the grief of her voice “never lasting long enough to leave any residue of warmth.”  Chuck Carlise is a real poet, and this Broken Escalator takes us where we need to go.


*The Opposite of a Contributor’s Copy: review by Amorak Huey (Sept. 2011)

“You can flip open the book to any page and find moments of utter clarity and wisdom… This one is a keeper, no doubt.”


*Several Reviews up at Goodreads (February 2013).  Excerpts:

“Chuck Carlise gives a gentle shape and color to that disorienting readjustment [of loss].” 

“This chapbook is a work of art.” 

“Carlise very expertly explores the idea of physical space, and the concept of our presence and absence within space.” 

“[These poems] are terse and evocative. They are deliberate in the way they explore the nuances of subjects we often take little time to consider – memory, identity, and perception.” 


*This is Where You Are: essay in culture journal, Berfrois, quotes from A Broken Escalator Still Isn’t the Stairs & includes photo of Milazzo (June 2011)


*After Flood All Earth Talk as One, series by artist Andy Rottner.  (The seventh painting in the series became the cover image for A Broken Escalator Still Isn’t the Stairs).

(Super Classy Publishing, Andy Rottner’s design and publishing house.)