Charlotte poet Casey Quinn tracked me down a few weeks back to tell me about his websites and his first book of poems. I found the poems in Snapshots of Life to be accessible, often witty, with a deft playfulness, and often poignant, with a lack of pretense in a day when so many poets try to show how clever they are. Three of the poems from his new book follow the biographical and publishing information, and after them, you will find some other testimonials to his work. Casy lives in Charlotte. Take a look at his links.
Casey Quinn is an avid reader of prose and poetry and created Short Story Library in May of 2008 to provide an outlet for many writers to have their work published. When not reading submissions, posting in the writers forum or marketing the magazine, Casey writes his own prose and poetry in addition to non fiction articles and has had over 1,000 pieces of writing in one form or another published in print or online formats.
Casey Quinn’s first poetry collection “Snapshots of Life” was published in April by Salvatore Publishing. The 88 page collection titled, “Snapshots of Life” is the first collection by Casey who has had over one hundred poems published in various print and online journals. Casey is also the editor of the online magazine Short Story Library and ReadMe Publishing.
Salvatore Publishing managing editor Guy Cousins, describes the collection: “American author, Casey Quinn observes the irony of everyday life with a keen eye and razor sharp wit.”
The collection is available from the printer
In addition, “Snapshots of Life” is distributed by Bowkers and can be found in online outlets including Barnes and Nobles, Amazon and Borders in addition to many more.
Publisher: Salvatore Publishing
Short Story Library
to my niece
i had not
i told her
how tall she got,
how grown up she looked,
how smart she seemed.
she told me
how fat i got,
how old i look,
how dumb i am.
it’s really great
to catch up
with the family.
when asked to paint the world
through the eyes
school buildings and
the vision was
and when the last
stroke was done
the canvas on fire
family of strangers
and video games
all of that
that just liked
to hang out
to each other
Review by Marc Schuster, Small Press Reviews
27 May 2009
by Casey Quinn
Perhaps best known as the editor of the free online literary journal, Short Story Library, Casey Quinn has come out with his first full volume of poetry, Snapshots of Life. Throughout this volume, Quinn joyfully charts the borderlands that lie between the mundane and the transcendent while training a sharp eye on the ironies of life. In “my enlightenment,” for example, Quinn communes with the divine while washing his car, and in “i picked at a scab today,” he meditates on the circle of life while, as the title implies, picking at a scab. The verse that appears throughout this collection is neither dense nor especially verbose. Wielding images like blunt objects — the car, the bird, the niece, the scab — Quinn creates poetry that reads like the verbal equivalent of an expressionist painting or a punch to the gut. You read it and get it immediately. Though I wouldn’t quite call this a book of inspirational verse, it does, in fact, tend to inspire even as it draws attention to the less inspirational elements of life. To borrow a metaphor the poet uses in “reality hold ‘em,” we can only play the cards we’re dealt, and Quinn never shies away from this fact. A fine collection of poetry from an insightful poet. - Marc Schuster, Small Press Reviews
Review by Robin Stratton, Boston Literary Magazine
by Casey Quinn
From the moment Casey Quinn humbly introduces Snapshots of Life - “you might just hate it, but here it is” - you can't help but be struck by his exquisite insight into everything from God and bird-poop-induced Enlightenment to the sentimental dynamics between men and women. Every human quirk is here, laid out for your inspection, and it doesn't matter if you like it or not because it's the Truth he's living right now... although that could change at any moment. This compelling browsefest through Quinn's brain will make you laugh and think and wish you could capture the simple and elegant photos of each day with such ease. - Robin Stratton, Boston Literary Magazine
Review by William Haskin, Poet and Editor of AuthorScoop 8 Jun 2009
All too often, book titles are appropos of nothing or are, at best, in only tangential relation to the subject matter they represent. Such is certainly not the case with poet Casey Quinn’s debut collection, Snapshots of Life.
This slim volume of minimalist pieces, like a photo album, offers the reader brief, sometimes fleeting, images of the poet’s experiences—subtle (sometimes deceptively so) as individual poems, but culminating over the course of the collection into a vivid portrait of the artist.
Unlike the camera eye, however, Quinn’s mind’s eye shifts deftly from external observation to expression of the internal. From the baffling complexity of human relationships to core existentialist quandaries, the poet takes us on a journey, while always keeping the path well-lit with accessible images that flow neatly one into another.
There’s a seriousness that pervades the poems without weighing them down, and a wry sense of humor emerges ocassionally to inform some of pieces, such as “i want to be just like John Wayne”, in which the speaker expresses his desire to harness the rugged masculinity of a by-gone era, but not until he’s conformed to the social expectations of a metrosexual gentleman and self-consciously dressed for the part:
i want to be
my mocha latte
i’m going to the salon
and get my hair styled
get some new denim clothes,
a big hat,
and cowboy boots.
i’m going to be
The irony, of course, is that John Wayne, too, was simply playing a part; thus the poet is merely one step further removed from the hyper-masculine ideal he seeks.
Quinn never dwells for too long on any one image or idea. The poems are almost uniformly short, and his lines rarely exceed five words. But there is an energy in the compression of both syntax and image that serves the collection well.
Casey Quinn is a fresh new voice in poetry and, for now, Snapshots of Life will likely earn him a willing audience for his sparse and airy style.
It will be up to him to eventually lead these new fans into deeper waters, where his brevity and drive-by glimpses into 21st-century life can give way to a wider opening of the curtains. Because as nice as snapshots are, the human eye eventually craves a broader vista.