Review by Paul Lichter

Paul Lichter is a jazz impresario, leading the Dimensions in Jazz program at the Portland Conservatory of Music.

The two long poem sequences that make up Gil Hemick’s newest collection The Cacophony of Rapture mark the ripening sensibility of a poet whose been around the block more than a few times, seen more than enough to know better, eyes wide open to the hyper-present algebras of possibility, and ears alert to the fleeting precarities of the “music of chance.”

Helmick knows enough to be able to decipher the differences between the observed real and the real as he interprets it, the jubilation and the threat, the inside real and the outsideareal, if you will . . . Ugliness in the streets and in the flesh he loves.

He is, finally, and foremost, a poet who knows enough to keep out of his own way in his quest to reveal what “Raptures” embellish the occasions of breakthrough, his and, and all things being “equal that is to the real itself”, outs, too, as we all stroll blissfully along our own predestined “highways to oblivion.”