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Keith Holyoak
Illustrated by: Jim Holyoak
ISBN13: 978-1933675886 (Hardbound)
ISBN13978-1-933675-77-0 (Perfectbound)
114 pages/50 original poems/6 translations
Price: $10.00 (Pefectbound)
Price: $15.00 (Hardbound)
Publish date: December 1, 2012
Publisher: Dos Madres Press, Inc.

About the book:

In his new volume Foreigner, Keith Holyoak creates contemporary poetry in the style of ancient Chinese classics. His marriage
of eastern and western influences is derived from his earlier work translating the great poets of the Tang dynasty, Li Bai and
Du Fu. A few translations are interspersed among Holyoak's original poems. The east-west fusion is further highlighted by the
illustrations, created by Jim Holyoak (Keith's son) using traditional Chinese-ink painting techniques.

Advance Praise:

It is not every day a professional cognitive psychologist turns into a poet, yet that is what we have in Keith Holyoak. His
study of Chinese poetry, especially Li Bai (Li Po) and Du Fu (Tu Fu), was the catalyst that brought about this remarkable
metamorphosis. He has somehow managed to let the spirit of Chinese poetry speak through him, with no loss of his sense of
being an American. A wonderful intelligence is brought to the task, which understands the profound subtlety of poetry, no
matter what nationality it is. He writes in Return to Peach Blossom Spring : Radiance washed / The blindness from my eyes.
We are able to re-experience the world through him, renewed in this way. His grasp of form, of political reality, of transience,
and of the redemptive powers working in poetry, bring to American literature something no country can afford to lose: a sense
of class in the fine arts. The Dos Madres Press is to be congratulated for publishing this book, which is sensitively illustrated
by Jim Holyoak, son of the poet and psychologist.
—Sebastian Barker FRSL, poet and editor of The London Magazine 2002-2008

"Keith Holyoak in his earlier volume, Facing the Moon, has given us some of the most elegant translations we have of Li Bai and Du Fu.
Here he adds further translations, including excellent ones of two of Li’s masterpieces. But this is primarily a collection of original
poems by Holyoak himself, largely inspired by Chinese poetry. Chinese poetry has long exercised an influence upon certain of our own
poets. Holyoak joins their number with his superbly crafted verses, covering the range from modernistic, half-rhymed poems to “neo-formal”
metrical poems with various rhyme schemes. He is unique in fact among American poets in having paid attention to the formal and structural
aspects of Chinese verse, and successfully weaving them into his own creations. The poet’s son, Jim, contributes evocative paintings that
conjure up a Chinese Samuel Palmer in their visionary intensity."
—Jonathan Chaves, Professor of Chinese, George Washington University

"In his latest book of poems, Foreigner, Keith Holyoak carries his expertise as a scholar and translator of Chinese poetry to a new level—
he has composed an entire volume of his own poetry in the style of the earliest classical Chinese poems. Holyoak has also included a number
of his expert translations of some of these poems, but the bulk of Foreigner is in his own distinctive voice and manner. The poems touch
upon many topics and scenes, not all of them Chinese, but this American poet has managed to resurrect for anglophone readers the tone, aura,
reticence, and profoundly dignified simplicity of the classical Chinese masters whom he has studied. Foreigner is also a magnificently
illustrated book, with pictures that comport perfectly with the exquisite text."
—Joseph S. Salemi, Editor, Trinacria

About the Author:

Keith Holyoak (whose adopted Mandarin name is Kaishi ) was raised on a dairy farm in British Columbia, Canada. He has degrees
in psychology from the University of British Columbia (BA) and Stanford University (PhD). His scientific work focuses on the
nature of human thinking and its basis in the brain. He has been a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and is a Fellow of the
American Association for the Advancement of Science. Currently he is a Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University
of California, Los Angeles.

Keith's son Jim, who also grew up in British Columbia, is an artist trained at the University of Victoria, Concordia University,
and as an apprentice to Chinese landscape master Shen Ling Xiang in Yangshuo, China. His work has been exhibited widely, including
galleries in Los Angeles, New York, Montreal and Vancouver. Both Keith and Jim spend part of their time at Pterodactyl Studio on
Salt Spring Island, British Columbia.

From the book:

by Keith Holyoak

How I admire their simple greetings,
     the way each fits the other
as surely as a cardigan
     passed down to son from father,

Streams from their ancestral well
     flowing through their tongues,
lapping at each other's ears
      and bubbling up in laughter;

How I admire their careless grace
      and stance of pure belonging,
the tapestries they weave, eyes closed,
     spun out of word and gesture–

But I am just an ungainly bird
     staring mute from a bough,
stopping a day and a night before
     I mount the sky to wander.


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