A publication for the faculty, staff, administrators, and friends of California State University, Chico
October 13, 2005 Volume 36 / Number 2


Troy Jollimore Wins Poetry Book Award

Troy Jollimore, Philosophy, won the 2nd annual Robert E. Lee & Ruth I. Wilson Poetry Book Award; the final judge was former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, and the book, Tom Thomson in Purgatory, will be published in the Margie/IntuiTHouse Poetry Series in summer 2006.

“Tom Thomson in Love” is the first poem in the title series, a collection of 40 sonnets, mostly unrhymed. It originally appeared in Margie: The American Journal of Poetry.

Tom Thomson in Love

Love pushed him sidewise through the bleary nights.
It flew at him like storms. He tried to learn
to overcome, to do without, but could,
he found, not; nor cigarettes, neither. He stuck
to them like glue. Opinions stuck to him
and drugged him down into the muck. Always asked he
what lay so deep down there—well now he knows:
it’s him—it’s he himself, goes down so far
and lies at bottom and takes not one breath
all winter, like a turtle. Him, who looks
upward through bottoms of glass-bottomed boats
and so on into sky, sky up as he is down,
sky blue as he, and free as he is not.
People say “My friend” to him, but just ironically.

—Troy Jollimore