James Benton earned his MA in creative writing at Cal State Sacramento, and presently teaches English Writing at Eastern Oregon University. His memoir, poetry, and essays have appeared in numerous literary journals both in print and online. In prior lives, he has worked as a sailor, an electrician, a rock and roll musician, and a private investigator. James currently resides in beautiful La Grande, Oregon.
Look for his poetry collection, Sailor, is available now.
The poems in this collection seek to represent the polysemous trajectories of one person’s effort to create a life of substance. A port call, indeed sea duty in general, is often a singular, formative event, for good or ill. It shades and informs all future experiences, whether closely or loosely related to the original. These poems, therefore, are arranged not by seasons, or chronology, but by port of call, an arrangement that mimics the way the mind forms lasting connections between experiences and their meanings.