Reviews and Praise
"Petrie's work is extraordinarily accomplished; he is one of the few practicing poets that has written with complete command in traditional forms and in a free verse of his own stamp. To find in our poetry a work of equal resourcefulness and a craft of such sureness is almost impossible. I think of Roethke, for like Roethke he seems able to move into any form he chooses and still maintain the unmistakable voice that is his and marks his work with what we come to call the genuine..."
-- Phil Levine (on The Runners)
"In Paul Petrie's new poems I am particularly taken by those which have the character of song. Song is not necessarily light; it can also be the mode in which we engage those deep, inescapable things which are not to be solved but must be said. Dying Vision of the Dollhouse Maker is such a poem; so are The Pause, The Cancer Patient to Her Dead Husband, and many another."
-- Richard Wilbur (on Strange Gravity)
"As a poet, Paul Petrie has long walked his own way; in his new work, he blazes a trail few others will dare follow. Although drama and great weights of meaning inform his work, he seems to take his stand with Verlaine, placing above all else the noble music of words. Orpheus, Song of Judas in Heaven,After the Expulsion and the other amazing poems strike a precarious note of a resonant gong that only the finest lyrics strike. I keep hearing it in these pages again and again.
X.J.Kennedy (on Strange Gravity)