Magic, Mystery, Madness

In each compelling image in this ekphrastic composite anthology, Jerry Craven gives the viewer something easily relatable, but he imbeds these elements in a context that defies time and space and rational probability. The young woman in “A Walk Beyond the Moon” follows a trail that seems to wind its way through a nebula of blue and red space dust; the harbor front in “Our Vast and Present Moment” is framed by a starry sky above and below. With his playful juxtaposition of component parts and his ramped-up color palette, Craven enhances the magic of each piece.

In their ekphrastic responses to Craven’s visual stimuli, all three literary artists—Andrew Geyer, Terry Dalrymple, and Craven himself—make reference to items found in the graphic work. Thus, in Terry Dalrymple’s “Egret Angel,” a white heron such as the one pictured in Craven’s graphic art knocks on the narrator’s front door; in Andrew Geyer’s “The Magical Bunnell Place,” the marsh-surrounded bungalow in Craven’s image supplies the story’s primary setting.

In this volume, subtitled “electric ekphrastics,” we confront a world both visual and verbal, where both Jules Verne and Isaac Asimov might feel at home.


Published by Angelina River Press in 2022 and edited by Tom Mack, Magic, Mystery, Madness: electric ekphrastics is Andrew Geyer's tenth book. Featuring the award-winning digital artwork of Jerry Craven, this ekphrastic composite anthology is filled with fictional and poetic responses to those artworks by co-authors Andrew Geyer, Terry Dalrymple, and Jerry Craven. Dramatic monologues, magical realism, science fiction, frame stories a la Poe, all of these and more are here—and the quality of both the artwork and the writing is exceptional.

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Powell's

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