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Forty Miles North of Nowhere

Poems by

LeRoy Sorenson

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poetry samples

"Here is America so American it’s almost Americana—soured by the hog plant’s exhaust and populated by suicides, preachers shouting Heal! and veterans facing double shots at a bar.  Here’s a gallery of haunted characters living in a place of sweet whiskey and sudden fornication, quick damnation on the jukeboxes a slow future that’s been strangled by the roots of a life-long grief.  Here are the blues, and boy do they sing!"

– Tony Barnstone, author of Tongues of War and

The Golem of Los Angeles

40 Miles

In the Press

In LeRoy Sorenson’s poems we find
a protagonist who confronts, in a truly remarkable way, the people and communities of the American Prairie;
this is a protagonist who, having “escaped” the small towns he writes about, refuses to abandon them. And what more can we ask for? These are poems about family, religion (or lack of it), slaughterhouses, addiction, violence, difficult love, history and the enduring human desire for connection and tenderness against the odds.


– Jude Nutter, author of
The Curator of Silence and
I Wish I Had a Heart Like Yours, Walt Whitman.


In a language of visceral accuracy made concise and memorable by narrative’s propulsion, LeRoy Sorenson tells the story of the living and the dead—an American story of the seldom-seen bedrock people of the Midwest, prayer on the edge of their tongue poised like the last amen. Articulating a wide range of expression from intimately confessional to grandly oracular, these poems are concise in the mind: tight and sinewy in the mouth.

– Juliet Patterson, author of

Threnody and The Truant Lover

40 Miles In The Press
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