Winslow in Love

Winslow is a 50-something poet who finds that the enterprise of poetry has defeated him. He decides to chuck the lyrical mode and give narration a try. He’s broke, battered and often drinks away the days in Portland bars when he’s offered a job teaching writing in Montana. Once there, he becomes smitten by a girl a third his age—tattooed, wryly intelligent—with as many, if not more, problems than he. There’s Johnny Walker in paper cups and a spring break cross-country trek in an aging Lincoln town car, in which the notion of escape becomes, for both of them, a heart-breaking flight toward one another. No clichés here, just resonant and dead-on dialogue by smart-talking people you actually care about as they try to round a hard curve into the great wide open.