By Matthew Stewart
Twenty years in the writing, THE KNIVES OF VILLALEJO is Matthew Stewart's first full collection. Stretching from suburban Surrey to the vineyards of Extremadura, Spain, its poems' delicate syllablic structures belie the vast wells of emotion beneath. Throughout the collection, brevity and apparent simplicity pack an unexpected punch each line, each poem, a perfectly poised, discrete drop, held together by the tensions of home and exile, then and now, before and after. Together, they form a pent-up storm.