Pleasures of the Game, the winner of the 2016 Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize, is a book of deceptively playful poems, of sparkling surfaces that conceal dark undercurrents. Its subjects include games of all kinds: from schoolyard Double Dutch to the chess match of love, from painters’ illusions to professional ice hockey, from the stratagems of spies to the life-and-death game we play against the universe.


“There is a striking intersection in Pleasures of the Game between iamb and rhyme and the modern landscape they flash over like summer lightning … There is nothing nostalgic about the formal disposition of these poems. They are exhilarated by their moment, engaged by the paradoxes, ready for the experience.”

—From the Foreword by Eavan Boland

“The game being played throughout the book is the game of verse-making, and it is being played with virtuosic deftness.”

Maryann Corbett, Smartish Pace

“A poet with such linguistic and moral resourcefulness is one to read and reread.”

—Stephen Kampa, The Hopkins Review

Pleasures of the Game cover, published by The Waywiser Press