Vernooykill Creek

“...Wonderment and horror reverberate throughout the mind, the one with lucency and the other in shadow, an incapacitating opacity, perhaps: what David Matlin calls 'traumatic obscurity' and 'toxic consequence'. There is a paradox here worthy of our attention: if the marvelous may be informed and animated by the monstrous, the monstrous leaves the marvelous no air, no light, no room. Yet Matlin's experience teaching poetry to men in Hell demonstrates the truth of Bachelard's conviction: Poetry is one of the destinies of speech. ” -Rikki Ducornet, American Book Review

“Matlin's outstanding work of nonfiction tackles the subject of the 'correctional facility,' a world that the author demonstrates is rapidly encroaching on our putatively free space. That such sobering sociology can read with all the grace and passion of imaginative fiction is Matlin's great accomplishment. ” -Eric Lorberer

“A lyrical diatribe against forces that conspire to make American hypocrisy incarnate , a paradox of mythic proportions, a world leader of incarceration (read: vengeance) while claiming to be leader of the free world.”—S.P. Healey, Rain Taxi