David Livewell grew up in the Kensington section of North Philadelphia. He works as an editor in Philadelphia and has taught poetry courses at La Salle University. His poems have appeared in Poetry, Threepenny Review, Yale Review, and other journals, and in his book, Woven Light: Poems and Photographs from Andrew Wyeth’s Pennsylvania. He was one of the founding editors of Janus: A Journal of Literature and has been the recipient of a New Jersey State Council on the Arts Poetry Fellowship. He lives with his wife and two children in New Jersey.
Poet David Livewell beckons you to follow him down the streets where he spent his childhood in North Philadelphia. This prize-winning collection guides readers through the working-class neighborhood of Kensington, not as tourists or passersby, but as open-eyed observers of the visceral and unique spirit of the locales and its inhabitants. Through his use of metrics and poetic forms, Livewell skillfully weaves together harsh urban narratives with tragic regional history to create a colorful mosaic of colonial hope, industrialization, religion, racism, memory, and the current state of the American dream.
"David Livewell has stared into the heart of old Philadelphia neighborhoods—into their history, into their ruin, into their resilience—and seen a whole world. He writes with grit and grace."
—J. D. McClatchy
"I’m glad that David Livewell’s fine poems are achieving a deserved recognition."
"David Livewell’s poems are as sharp-edged, bright, and lyrical as cut crystal. There is something both tough-minded and tender about this work, which is so admirably concise and yet so resonant. Livewell can evoke a complicated life in a dozen perfect lines or summon a snowy evening from childhood fragrant with loss. This fine book reveals a poet of deep feeling and exquisite skill."
Truman State University Press