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By Scott OwensPublisher: Red Hawk PublicationsISBN: 978-1-952485-87-9Genre: PoetryPrice: $15.00
Available from: Red Hawk Publications

Scott Owens writes poetry as if he were a painter, seeing more than other people see, looking beyond the obvious. Owens sees and invites the reader to visualize images, actions, beliefs, purposes, motives, and results of what he has gleaned from his life as a child, a husband, a father, a teacher, a human being who took notice.

Owens commented, “Prepositional came to be because one of my customers, after reading Sky Full of Stars and Dreaming, asked if I had another book that was positive and upbeat like that. While most of my prior books had some pretty heavy content, each also contained a certain number of poems about “redemption,” and when I looked at those, I realized that most of them found redemption through relationships. Aiming to fulfill my reader’s wish, I set out to explore that idea more fully and write new poems about the redemption inherent in relationships to go along with those that had already created a thread throughout my previous work. Writing with such a positive idea in mind and writing for someone whose opinion I valued made the whole process enjoyable, and having the opportunity to play around with my favorite part of speech (prepositions) made it fun.”

This is Scott Owens’ 18th poetry collection. Some of his other collections are Worlds Enough and Sky Full of Stars and Dreaming, both published by Redhawk Publications. Owens published his first poem about 45 years ago and his first poetry collection more than 30 years ago. Owens has been teaching for over 35 years; he is currently a Poetry Professor at Lenoir-Rhyne University and has taught poetry workshops in schools, libraries, and communities across the southeast. For the past decade, he has owned and operated Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse and Café in downtown Hickory with his wife, Julie.


In Prepositional, Scott Owens trues the lapping sand from Where I Come From all the way to the Dollar General, where he offers the truth that words work the way they do for the enrichment of us all. We must keep on keeping on seems to be the root message and enjoying it as we do. His philosophical lyrics prove that ‘Where there is language, there is art.

2015-2018 poet laureate Shelby Stephenson

In “Where I Come From” he explores how we are more alike than different. “On Settelmeyer Bridge,” shows us that “only the names change.” This is a collection of some of Owens’s most loved poems mixed with newer poems such as “Coffee During Covid.” Toward the end of the book, he writes about aging, what he treasures and what he has learned. In “Nearing the End of my Sentence,” he writes “I long for a semi-colon, a dash, a parenthesis, at least another comma.” This is another Scott Owens book I will read again and again.

Glenda Beall, NCWN Net West

Poet Scott Owens has been working steadily, especially in the period since 2006 on poetry that distinguishes itself craft-wise with a seamless quality that links a powerfully disturbing history to a fulfilling, successful adulthood. In Prepositional, he eschews the expectations for the New and Selected format by offering decidedly more of the New, a circumstance that will delight his devoted readers. If you know Scott’s work, you’ll know that Norman is here, of course, to direct all these flashing memories and precise observations down the forever river, “refusing to be forgotten

Tim Peeler, author and editor

Prepositional Scott Owens highlights the preposition as a metaphor for shared humanity, and with an engaging playfulness, he explores human relationships and the world at large, drawing upon a rich mosaic of life experiences. Owens parses our connections, “As you are a part, I am a part,/and though we can be just one,/ we are always also many,/ and we can never be completely apart.” Brimming with artistry, Prepositional also displays our universality: “Where I come from/ is the same place you come from…” Throughout the book subtle humor abounds, bringing text and subtext into play: “Without prepositions it’s hard to imagine/ where we would end up.” Prepositional sweeps the reader on a rollicking journey in lyric landscapes of language, where “So much of who we are/resides there – between the lips/of any human mouth.”

Ami Kaye, Publisher & Editor, Glass Lyre Press