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Jonathan Harrington (Author)

The Frozen Sea Within Us

The Frozen Sea Within Us

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Beltway Editions
9 X 6 in
224 pg

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Title: The Frozen Sea Within Us: New and Selected Poems 1983-2023

Author: Jonathan Harrington

Softcover  $22.00

Published by Beltway Editions

September 1, 2023 

224 Pages 

ISBN 978-1-957372-04-4

What a pleasure to have a selected poems by Jonathan Harrington. Truth-telling, passionate, plainspoken, awestruck, The Frozen Sea Within Us moves through forty years of work that relishes unreconciled contradictions. Drifting from visionary to poignant longing to surreality (bicycles falling from the sky!). I kept thinking of Mahmoud Darwish’s words: “Extreme clarity is a mystery.” This is the clear voice of an honest friend with urgent news. A dazzling collection. 

—John Wall Barger, author of Smog Mother

"This overdue volume charts the remarkable career of an unmistakable voice in American poetry. Harrington's range—embracing the South, New York and Mexico, as well as interior landscapes of a re-imagined gospel in today's Middle East—is rare and impressive. Deeply felt, sometimes harrowing, sometimes funny, these are poems that sing to the soul."

—Charles Holdefer, author of Don’t Look At Me

While reading Jonathan Harrington, one has the feeling that, for this writer, nothing’s sacred, at the same time that everything is. He can inhabit biblical times as well as the backyard of a nephew with its “chromium lawn furniture”, and a shed “with AC (what!) for the lawnmower?” This poet is always moving, and everywhere he goes, he takes his ‘southern self’. The world is full of annoyances—getting old, dogs that start up a chorus, loneliness, darkness. He goes into the wilderness of the self, too, where “You begin to see a god in the face of every tree.” The one place that seems a steadying factor, an anchor, is home: “I was born where

orange/groves run in geometric rows”, he writes in lines presenting a solid, sure footing, where

all else is doubt and contradiction. With wit and calamitous humor, The Frozen Sea Within Us poses its own wonderful truths and enigmas.

—Mervyn Taylor, author of The Last Train

A poet of the quotidian, Jonathan Harrington has the seer’s gift of perceiving the extraordinary beneath the ordinary and the ordinary beneath the extraordinary. His lyrical bent is infused with a droll sense of humor and delicious irony. Most of the poems in this welcome collection are brief but sharp, snapshots that speak volumes about the larger world and that of the poet’s self, and how the twain intersects in haunting, intricate, and surprising ways. There’s craft and magic in Harrington’s words sure to ensorcell the reader.

—Luis H. Francia, author of Thorn Grass

Jonathan Harrington
Author Bio

Jonathan Harrington lives in Yucatan, Mexico. A graduate of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop,

he has published over twenty books including poetry, novels, short stories, essays and translations. In

addition he has published many magazine pieces and reviews. His work has appeared in journals in the

U.S. and throughout the world. In 2021 he was awarded the International Medal of Culture and Art in

Mexico. His books of poetry include, Lift up the Stone: The Gospel According to Jonathan (bilingual,

translation by Fer de la Cruz), The Traffic of Our Lives (winner of the Ledge Press Poetry Chapbook Prize

published in 2014), Rastro de Papeles (Spanish) Handcuffed to the Jukebox, Aqui/Here (bilingual) and Yesterday,

A Long Time Ago. His translations of Mayan poetry have appeared in World Literature Today, Visions

International, The Dirty Goat, International Poetry Review, Loch Raven Review and elsewhere. In addition to

poetry, he has edited an anthology of short stories: New Visions: Fiction by Florida Writers, authored a

collection of essays, Tropical Son: Essays on the Nature of Florida, and has published five novels: The Death of

Cousin Rose, The Second Sorrowful Mystery, A Great Day for Dying, Saint Valentine’s Diamond and Death on the

Southwest Chief. Jonathan has published poetry in Poetry East, The Texas Review, Main Street Rag, Slant,

Manhattan Times, Aries, Studio, In Other Words: Merida, Morbo, Common Ground, Iodine Poetry Review, Nebo,

The Taylor Trust, Ancient Paths, Pebble Lake Review, Blueline, The Shop, The Lantern Review, Poetry Motel,

Brobdingnagian Times, Diamond Poetry Review, The Response of Poetry, Knowing Stones, Pandaloon, Pirate Writings,

Epitaph, Pleiades, English Journal, Without Halos, Fiction Quarterly, Polyphony, South Florida Poetry Review,

Brushing, Green River Review, Zelo, Pencil Press Quarterly, Kentucky Poetry Review, Black Bear Review, Anemone,

Skylight, The Spectator, Crocodile Tears, Poetry Ireland (Éigse Éireann), Pavement and many other journals