Poetry. Winner of the Carve Magazine Prose and Poetry Contest for Poetry. Donald Levering’s PREVIOUS LIVES: NEW AND SELECTED EARLY POEMS cherry-picks poems from this widely-published poet’s 40 year career. Arranged to flow thematically rather than chronologically, selections from his first eight books are interspersed with previously uncollected poems in 98 pages. The book showcases Levering’s broad stylistic range. Free-verse partners with pantoum, ghazal, and blank verse. Tight, imagist gems nest beside Whitmanesque declamatory odes. The title is at play where the speaker portrays various lives: a snow-plow driver, a highway surveyor, a man who steals subway trains, a prisoner in a Borges story, a stroke-afflicted astrologer, a Navajo healer, a kachina doll salesman. Humorous paeans to Roethke, Bly, and Freud lend levity to a text that witnesses estrangement and war. Ravens, plants, and fungi are also featured in this former groundskeeper’s retrospective.