Justin Marks’s book, The Comedown, was recently the subject of a 20-minute long discussion on Dear Literature, a podcast hosted by two NYC readers, literature/publishing students, and friends, Vanessa and Alyssa. They do an excellent close reading of the book, and along the way they raise a lot of honest points and interesting questions. The things they talk about made the book new for me. After having read it several times over the last couple years, I feel like I have new eyes to read it again.

As someone who often has a hard time discussing poetry, I was inspired by how conversational they are, and how they move from the big themes within Justin’s book to small snippets from lines and stanzas. It means so much to me that they actually referred to the text and not just the big themes, because zeroing in on individual lines is what makes poetry memorable for me.

And they explore how the book actually works as one long poem, which I also appreciated.

Here’s the Dear Lit Pod Linktree—they are doing amazing things on their podcast and in the literary and publishing world generally. You can see lots of their projects here.

And here’s the episode where they discuss The Comedown