"When the end of times does finally come, this is the book we will need. Teach it in schools, preach it in churches, talk about it with strangers whilst idly waiting for a train. Packed with humour, a sprinkling of romance and some much-needed wisdom I devoured this in one sitting. The poems contain incredible imagery that made me nod my head in appreciation. One moment Burnside describes building tripwires for ants, the next you are watching small horses do laps of a teacup. When everything else is crumbling, this is a little book of hope and advice that will keep close to hand. And if there is only piece of wisdom to follow, in the words of Burnside, ‘Get yourself a new hat."
Stephen Lightbown, author of two collections Only Air and The Last Custodian
"Using tales of tiny horses, Chinese finger traps and Morgan Freeman, Burnside pokes holes in the desperately ridiculous tapestry of life – but don’t be fooled by the lightness of the lines, or the pop culture referencing. Beneath the jacket of sublime nonsense lies a shirt made out of truth and the strangest kind of melancholy. As for what lies underneath that – well, it’s the biggest heart in literature."
Stuart Buck, author of Become Something Frail & EIC Bear Creek Gazette
"'Here Is A Little Book To Comfort You During These Unusually Dark Times' is exactly as described, and that's without setting fire to the pages in hopes of warming one's soul. Within this little book are poems that glimmer and shine, taking a lifetime's worth of pop culture that has become stuck within our teeth and fingernails, scraped, plucked, and mixed in with Matthew Burnside's own CRT filtered pixel perfect dreams. The sort they most likely have whilst drinking hot tea, alongside that teeny tiny horse named Tony Trots. As the Death Star lingers in the sky, remember that stormtroopers like to come home and binge-watch Netflix too. Burnside certainly does."
- Joe Woodhouse, author of channelstatic.wordpress.com
About the Author
Matthew Burnside is the author of five books, the forthcoming Wiki of Infinite Sorrows (KERNPUNKT, 2021), Postludes (KERNPUNKT), Rules to Win the Game (Spuyten Duyvil), Dear Wolfmother (Hypertext Serial Novel, Heavy Feather Review), and Meditations of the Nameless Infinite (Robocup Press). He is also the author of the chapbooks Infinity's Jukebox (Passenger Side Books), Escapologies (Red Bird), Book of If & Ever (Red Bird), and the following digital projects: In Search of, 13 Objects of Obscure Power, Adjunct, Writer: The Game, Are You There Internet? It's Me, Bolivia, and Totidem Verbis. His work has appeared in Best American Experimental Writing, DIAGRAM, PANK, Los Angeles Review, Passages North, Hobart, Kill Author, Pithead Chapel, Apt, Bartleby Snopes, Juked, Elimae, Decomp, Contrary, Pulp Metal Magazine, and others. He has served as an editor, reader, or blog writer for PANK, Iowa Review, Ploughshares Blog, NPR's 3-Minute Fiction, Cloud Rodeo, BOAAT and Mixed Fruit. He is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and recipient of a Truman Capote Fellowship. He has taught at the University of Iowa, University of North Texas, Wesleyan University, and Hollins University.
Page numbers: 36
Publication date: November 2021
Genre: Prose Poetry/Experimental Poetry
Cover art & design: Haley Jenkins