The Last Predicta

Chad Davidson’s poem "American Cheerleader" contains the following stanza:

...Cheerleading is nothing
if not naked prophecy, platonic on those beds
of turf unreal enough we imagine grayer grass
on Elysium.

Throughout this poem, Davidson compares and connects the ancient Greeks and their version of pomp and war with the contemporary version taking place on football fields across the United States. He does so with a lyrical eye and ear and sees our current time with a weight that is refreshing as well as terrifying. In poems devoted to such topics as Target and Carnival cruises, as well as to Caravaggio’s The Calling of St. Matthew or flies circling a bowl of forgotten fruit, Davidson’s observations feel like the prophesy and revelations of an ancient time suddenly coming true. Paul Guest says this about Davidson’s work, "The Last Predicta is like a broadcast from The End of something: a culture, a time, a language, a world. This one. If the picture seems to roll, it’s our eyes, our obtains, straining to keep up with Chad Davidson’s madcap velocity, the mordant blur all the world is washed in."

This book review originally appeared in American Poets.