Year of the Poets

by Jon Ballard

year-of-poets“. . .  a highly enjoyable debut novel.”
— Kirkus Reviews

It’s the bicentennial year of 1976 at the Davenport Summer Retreat for Artists, and fifty-nine year old Arthur Honeyman — lothario, vagabond, carpenter, and, above all, renowned versifier — has his hands full: carrying on simultaneous affairs with two poetesses, composing his first new manuscript of poems in years, and vacillating between making contact with his estranged adult son, Pablo, or just letting him be. Along the way, Honeyman’s conviction that there are two kinds of people — “those who hold onto things, and those who get on with things” — will be put to the test, and he’ll finally have to decide which kind of person he wants to be.

Inhabited by restless, searching people, Year of the Poets segues between northern Michigan and Mexico City, Mexico, and points beyond. Set in the not-so-distant past of Cold War politics, manual typewriters, rotary phones, and handwritten missives, it’s a story about the push and pull of kith and kin, as well as the heavy burdens of sentimentality, memory, and denial that weigh upon us all.

Year of the Poets by Jon Ballard
Date of Publication: May 25, 2014
Loose Leaves Publishing
392 pages $18.95 paper
ISBN-13: 9781624320163 (paper)
ISBN: 9781624320170 (e-book)
Available:,,, & select independent bookstores in Michigan

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