A Review of Next Exit: Nine by MK Chavez and John Sweet


Review of Next Exit: Nine by  MK Chavez and John Sweet

By Scot Young

Buy the book here:


Visit MK Chavez:
Visit: John Sweet:

As much as I like the work of MK Chavez and John Sweet I dislike collaborations even more.  As a child   my  report cards were always checked—does not play well with others—the handwriting has always been on the wall.  I have never been a fan of sharing.  In grad school  I preferred the solo act too and resisted the cohort thing.  As an adult and still carrying this trait, I could not see how publishing a collaborative chap could work. I believe art is solitary, that the creative process works better alone–in isolation.  I mean really, how can it gel?  And what is the point?  Give me a bottle of Two Buck Chuck’s and close the door.  So when I closed the door I found this.

Next  Exit: Nine is the latest chap book by MK Chavez and John Sweet.  It is a look at America from two poets–Sweet in New York and Chavez in California. As depicted on the cover, it is a look through an ornate gate at an open dumpster.  This collection takes you on a road trip from San Quentin to a roadside café in Nevada to a gas station in New York.

From springs, new york:

and we are tenderly blessed
for the sins we have
yet to commit,
and we have nothing to
break but promises

It is a collaborative trip to the land of melancholy, sadness and pain.  It is documentation of place, of America written uniquely enough in one voice from these two exceptional poets.

From point san quentin, california:

but we don’t cry and for different reasons. he can’t
be seen to have the weakness
of a woman. and I don’t cry
because it’s dangerous to be
a woman. in this foreign land
we call home, a teardrop
gets tattooed at the corner
of your eye to let the world
know that you don’t
have to go far to fight a war

This limited run of the Next Exit chap books always sells out fast.  This one with the combination of these two fabulous poets won’t last long either. At $4.00 postage paid it is a given.  And oh yeah, if you look real close in the dumpster on the cover, that is me sitting by myself in the corner eating a bit of crow and reading Next Exit: Nine.

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8 Responses to A Review of Next Exit: Nine by MK Chavez and John Sweet

  1. Dana says:

    Hey, have you read Crawlspace by Daniel Comisky and C.E. Putnam. It’s another one I think you would really dig. Really. It comes with 3D glasses.

  2. Scot says:

    dana
    no, is it poetry?

  3. Julie says:

    Beautiful review, Scot. I will definitely check this one out, too.

  4. maurie says:

    Loverly review,great impact/worth saving.

  5. johemmant says:

    Sounds great, thanks for the tip-off.

  6. I’m not generally into collaboration either, but this sounds great…

  7. […] with Kendra Steiner Editions) have been reviewed by Scot Young. Check out Scot Youngs Blog site MidwestPoets for the review of NEXT EXIT# 9. You can find Scot’s review of at […]

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