"I turn to your poems and they make me think, ponder, digest, think some more, smile and smile and nod too. It's as if you and your singular voice are sitting right beside me. Oh, what a comfort." —Janelle Palma
I watched you grow up from age 18 til now, but my question is "When did you gain so much maturity?" It has probably always been there but we always spent so much time storytelling, catching up and laughing that I never saw it coming.—Carol Lucha Burns
What a special gift your book would be to me! I have such fond memories of you in my class at Hancock Elementary. One that stands out in my mind: I was pregnant with my oldest son in December 1962. Your desk was right beside mine. You looked at me with a big grin and said: "Your baby just kicked you!" He was born on December 30.—Dolly Flynn
Whenever I read your work the years fly by, the distance vanishes and we are together again and I am entertained, inspired and made thoughtful by your beautifully and artfully assembled observations, opinions, humor and reflection.—Peter Landroche
In Volume 35 of John's complete poetry he poses 95 questions such as "Can you handle a surprise? Can you handle a big one?" The reader has the option of answering before reading John's reply. He writes in part: One of the biggest surprises is to realize one is an Elder. [Publ.2019]
Whether wrapped in a flag to make a political statement or cavorting with an over-sized rocking horse in Mexico, we are newly “elder” and testing the boundaries with words, music and action. Welcome to our journey!
John Wm Garand's poetry is not academic, not obtuse, not cryptic. His poems are meant to be understood. All 87 new poems in this volume follow a strict form and, as is often the case in poetry, benefit from reading aloud. So, gather a group of people around you and enjoy!
What is the meaning of a photograph when the caption is of something unrelated? And, what happens to a poem when it is paired with an incongruous image? Our mind deciphers words while our eyes are looking beyond them. We see a familiar sight but are told it is something else. When we read about the Empire State Building and see clothes drying on a fire escape, where exactly are we? We decided to try and find out in this volume. The results are surprising. See what you think. This work will not be available in paperback.
John's most recent collection of 87 poems include as many colorful photographs of his life in New Hampshire, Manhattan, Switzerland and beyond. He tries—unsuccessfully—to "tone it down" because he was told that he is simply too happy.
In Venice we lived just above a canal, in Long Island we are no more than 20 minutes from the sandy beaches of Fire Island, in Fort Lauderdale-by-the-Sea we had to keep our shades pulled at night so the turtle hatchlings would head towards water and in Puerto Vallarta we strolled the malecón every evening watching the buskers and feasting on grilled red snapper. Wish you were there!
JWGrum’s best liked and most popular poems stem from this volume which were written between March 2013 and September 2014. These were penned in San Francisco and northern California, San Juan (Puerto Rico), Ninole (Big Island, Hawaii), Haute-Nendaz (Switzerland), New Hampshire, Long Island (New York), and Venice (Italy). John reads one of the poems in an enclosed video.
JWG 'The Reader Writes' showcases a collection of 95 insightful, easy to read autobiographical poems written in 2012-13. The author details his encounters with vintage issues of TV Guide, heirloom family correspondence, cryptic symphonic scores, colorful Sunday "funnies" and a plethora of other amusing reading material. He contemplates the effect these written words have had upon the child he once was and the gratifying decades which followed. John Wm Garand
One need only read through the titles of these 112 poems, most of which were written during the author's winter holiday in Todos Santos, México, to see the breadth of topics upon which he pondered. From Dark Matter to migrating whales to personal egos to bullying, all are covered with insight that will make you nod in agreement. These easy to read and understand stanzas will enlighten and are sure to entertain. John Wm Garand
John Wm Garand’s volume was originally titled “Mental Pathways” but we realized that wasn’t going to attract much attention. So, we went for a bold look to make a bold statement. We live on an island and we often vacation on islands, or within walking distance of the shore. Whether we realize it or not, it becomes a life style.
2011 brought us on a honeymoon of sorts, which we milked for as long as possible. We had already been together for 31 years, after all. In this illustrated volume we cover ground which was soon to become very familiar: The shores of Lake Geneva in Switzerland. Was this where we would find the answers?
"Who thought up yesterday, today, and tomorrow? Who had the cognizance to create these labels delineating age? Today exists for tomorrow. Nothing stops time. Each day's a prize." And with this deeply felt sense of existence, the author surrounds his wedding day—the first day on which same-sex marriages were legal in New York State—with reminiscences of his days and nights in New Mexico, of the people and events which affected him profoundly, and his highly anticipated honeymoon in the Swiss Alps. John Wm Garand
It was a difficult time dealing with four aging parents in the Spring of 2011. While the author's scribblings in his book "Done and Not Begun" deal explicitly with these events, the 118 poems in "Grand Hodgepodge" appear to skirt the daily tribulations of illness, infirmity, dotage and an unexpected death in the family.
Topics ranging from Walt Disney to opera, to PBS and NPR, kangaroos to Hollywood populate these pages. The burdens of coping with daily life were only hinted at and it is admirable that such optimism existed during those trying days. John Wm Garand
JWG revisits childhood memories after spending Christmas 2010 in Hancock, New Hampshire. This volume includes a video of 83 year old mother Louise Garand showing the quilt she made when she was 11 years old.
The later half of 2010 brought us from Switzerland, home to Long Island, to New Hampshire and, finally, to Puerto Vallarta. Our adventures in foreign travels were just beginning. As always, we made sure our destinations were relatively gay friendly. This volume includes a video of an eccentric dance performed on a Swiss alp.
This eclectic collection written in 2010 jumps from location to location and covers all manner or topics such as an aborted puppet show (a sudden downpour); the Liberty Bell; nude gardening on Fire Island; and, the end of the summer drought in New Hampshire. An enclosed video has JWGrum “face dancing” on a tree stump in Geneva, Switzerland.
An extended string of very short poems chronicles the days between the end of winter and the beginning of summer with the appearance of the first blooms, the nesting birds, and the chores attendant with gardening. Sprinkled throughout are the author's attempts to deal with an attic full of his family's history: old letters, memorabilia, a boyhood in New Hampshire. A trip to the Grand Canyon helps put this little garden patch in the proper perspective and time—always time—weighs heavily and makes its presence known.
With this volume, JWGrum embarked on a new venture: One new poem every day. There were some interruptions along the way but as of 2017 we have nearly 1,700 poems published. “Loving a New Day” consists of two contrasting parts written on Maui and Long Island in the first months of 2010. A short audio/video recording is included.
Before John owned a camera he simply and painstakingly jotted down everything he saw, oftentimes while his friends stood by, patiently waiting for him to finish. Most of them didn't know that—years later—they would be called upon to read these words to an audience in various venues throughout New York City.