Poet Maurice Manning has done something unusual for a poetry collection. He’s crawled inside the head of a famous historical figure and told stories about the man’s life from his own, posthumous perspective.
In Railsplitter: Poems, the historical figure is Abraham Lincoln. Manning explains that his own affinities for Lincoln have been long-standing. “I grew up near his birthplace,” he writes in the preface, “and I live in the same county where his parents were married. My ancestors were early settlers of Kentucky. All my life I have had a sense of the world Lincoln came from, and meeting him through poetry has seemed, especially in recent years, inevitable.” He says his great-great-grandfather would boast that he voted for Lincoln twice.
To continue reading, please see my post today at Tweetspeak Poetry.