Wayne’s College of Beauty

David Swanger

Some people say that an artist simply sees the world in a different manner than most people, and while this may be an oversimplification of David Swanger’s poetry, it is at least partially true. The Santa Cruz poet divides his fifth collection of poetry into four sections—Fathers and Mothers/Husbands and Wives, Water/War, Known/Unknown, and Departure/Arrival—and it is in these chapters that Swanger turns ugliness into beauty, and vice versa. In the touching “Alone,” a father and son connect through the respective solitudes of old age and childhood, presenting a theme that appears throughout the collection. The piece finds a common connection out of a unique distinction and, like many of the poems, the author gladly finds that connection at the same moment the reader does.