“‘Dark Shadows made me believe // in a world of paranormal certainty,’ and after you read this book, you will too. Tony Trigilio writes a world in which there is no separation between his dailiness and the fictional realm of Dark Shadows, the supernatural soap opera he clearly loves, even with its daily rash of continuity errors, bad makeup, flubbed lines, and inherent camp, a show that has possessed him since he first watched it as a child with his mother. This book is haunted—how could it not be?—not only by Barnabas Collins, the doddering vampire who enfolds and catalyzes the show’s time-traveling retreat to 1795 New England and back to its present, but also James Earl Ray, the Boston Marathon bombings, and, most intensely, Trigilio’s mother, who emerges in this book as a complex figure worthy of the multivolume poem the poet has undertaken, even if it may well bury him alive.”
—Nick Twemlow, Palm Trees
Praise for Book 1 of The Complete Dark Shadows (of My Childhood)
“The Complete Dark Shadows (of My Childhood) feels meditative, organic, and weighty far beyond what one would anticipate from a poem about a blooper-ridden ’60s TV show.”
—Rain Taxi: Review of Books
“By turns comic and heartrending, lyric and absurd, The Complete Dark Shadows (of My Childhood) collages elements from dreams, memories, and pop-culture into a strangely compelling portrait of the little boy who turned into Tony Trigilio”
—Maggie Millner, ZYZZYVA
“I think [Trigilio] is one of the most versatile writers in the U.S. today. He’s stretching not only poetry, but narrative as well. . . . You never know what he’ll do next.”
—Joseph Harrington, Things Come On (an amneoir)
About Tony Trigilio
Tony Trigilio’s newest books are the poetry collections The Complete Dark Shadows (of My Childhood), Book 1 (BlazeVOX Books), White Noise (Apostrophe Books), and, as editor, Elise Cowen: Poems and Fragments (Ahsahta Press).
He is the author of the poetry collections Historic Diary (BlazeVOX Books) and The Lama’s English Lessons (Three Candles Press); the chapbooks With the Memory, Which is Enormous (Main Street Rag Press) and Make a Joke and I Will Sigh and You Will Laugh and I Will Cry (Scantily Clad Press); and two books of criticism, Allen Ginsberg’s Buddhist Poetics (Southern Illinois University Press) and “Strange Prophecies Anew” (Fairleigh Dickinson University Press). With Tim Prchal, he co-edited the anthology, Visions and Divisions: American Immigration Literature, 1870-1930 (Rutgers University Press).
His poems have been anthologized widely, including most recently in Poems Dead and Undead (Knopf/Everyman’s Library), Obsessions: Sestinas in the Twenty-First Century (Dartmouth College Press), The Arcadia Project: North American Postmodern Pastoral (Ahsahta Press), A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry (University of Akron Press), City of the Big Shoulders: An Anthology of Chicago Poetry (University of Iowa Press), Villanelles (Knopf/Everyman’s Library), and Starting Today: 100 Poems for Obama’s First 100 Days (U of Iowa P), among others.
He has published critical essays in Reconstructing the Beats (ed. Jennie Skerl; Palgrave/ MacMillan) and Girls Who Wore Black: Women Writing the Beat Generation (ed. Ronna Johnson and Nancy Grace; Rutgers University Press). Tony’s articles and book reviews also have appeared in journals such as American Literature, Another Chicago Magazine, Boston Review, The Journal of Beat Studies, Milk, Modern Language Studies, and Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature. His creative nonfiction essays appeared regularly in the Journal of the Cosmic Baseball Association.
Tony plays in the band Pet Theories, and he recorded and toured in the early-1990s as a member of Drumming On Glass. Since 2012, he has hosted the monthly poetry podcast Radio Free Albion.
He holds a Ph.D. in English from Northeastern University in Boston. While living in Boston, Tony edited Lotus Arrow, the newsletter of the Kurukulla Center for Tibetan Buddhist Studies, and was one of the founding members of the Fenway Skills Exchange, a grass-roots alternative economic system for the Fenway neighborhood.
A recipient of a 2009 Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Poetry, he has taught since 1999 at Columbia College Chicago, where he directs the program in Creative Writing/Poetry. He co-founded and co-edited the poetry magazine Court Green, which was published in association with Columbia College Chicago from 2004-2015. His courses can be found at starve.org/teaching/classes.html.