Monthly Archives: August 2016

3 new poems

…here in Right Hand Pointing’s Kiss: Very Short Poems:!102-part-b/c1zb8

Scroll down, scroll down, scroll down. I’m in Part Two.

Five, count em, five new poems

…here at Peacock Journal:

One new poem

….here in Berkeley Poetry Review:

I talk to myself

Recently, I sat down with myself to talk about my new novel, Robert Walker.

Why Robert Walker?


An imaginary conversation by its author with its author.


Corey: Why the story of a homeless man in Memphis?


Corey: Well, we certainly have our share. Like most great American cities post-Reagan.


Corey: Is this a political screed then? What does Reagan have to do with your story?


Corey: I don’t know. Someone told me that Reagan’s heartlessness cast a lot of folks who needed psychiatric treatment onto the streets. I don’t pretend to understand it.


Corey: So, really, Robert Walker. Why him?


Corey: Robert is myself if not for the grace of God. Robert is any man who suddenly finds himself alone and dispossessed and destitute. Robert walks a path only slightly off the beaten one, a parallel but darker path.


Corey: Did you write this out of some kind of personal responsiveness? Do you in fact know anyone who is homeless?


Corey: I don’t. And I don’t want to suggest that I grasp all, or even most, of the hardships.


Corey: So, Robert is a sympathetic character. His author loves him?


Corey: I started this poignant tale with the idea that Robert would be a sort of Lemuel Pitkin character; already homeless, he wakes one morning with Bell’s palsy and loses control of half his face. I thought it would be entertaining to have everything fall away from him for our delectation. He would walk the world and loses bits of himself, piece by piece, so to speak.


Corey: But that’s not the story you wrote.


Corey: Correct. Robert chastened me. He is a gentle soul and is surrounded by other gentle souls. The characters in Robert Walker became dear to me early on and I wanted to do well by them. I wanted their voices heard and I wanted empathy to grow from that, not only in the reader but in myself.


Corey: Are you generally the guy who opens his wallet to any panhandler?


Corey: I am not. I’m torn about it, too. I honestly don’t know the best thing to do. Plus I don’t have a lot of money. Plus I am notoriously cheap.


Corey: Robert’s peripatetic two day journey in the novel is like a veritable map of modern Memphis.


Corey: Right, but I don’t know what peripatetic means.


Corey: Walking around.


Corey: Ah, yes. I wrote it with a map of Memphis next to me. Then the wife and I took a driving tour of Robert’s walk, noting specific places and mixing in the hoodoo verisimilitude. It’s not just Robert’s story. It’s also a hymn to my city, which I love the way Adam loved Eden.


Corey: Before the snake.


Corey: And after. I recognize the snake. The snake is part of the tapestry.


Corey: Ok, then. Thank you for your time.


Corey: My pleasure. Buy the book.




My new novel, Robert Walker

Dear Kith and Kin,

My new novel, Robert Walker (Livingston Press), is now available. Hardbacks are $30, paperbacks $17.95. It is a somewhat different take on the novel for me, the story of 2 days in the life of a homeless man in Memphis.

They can be ordered signed or inscribed here: Robert Walker

They are also available wherever books are sold, except Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.

Thanks to David Tankersley and Jon Sparks for the cover photograph (below).

I will be signing and reading from Robert Walker as well as my new, previously announced, book of poetry, Opaque Melodies that Would Bug Most People (After the Pause Books, $8), on Thursday, September 29th, at my very own bookstore. Save the date!


Here are some nice things said about Robert Walker:

“In Robert Walker, Corey Mesler has created a protagonist who pulls us into his world and forces us to see the world as he experiences it. Lucky for readers that this world is made perfect by its flaws. A vivid portrait of Memphis and the people who we often choose not to see.”

Courtney Miller Santo, author of Three Story House and The Roots of the Olive Tree

 “Robert Walker, the main character of Corey Mesler’s book of the same name is a man adrift in Memphis. Walker is homeless and he moves through the city connecting with both his own past and the city’s needy and vulnerable. Readers will find something gentle, wise and moving in these pages.”

Darcey Steinke, author of Sister Golden Hair and Suicide Blonde

“In Corey Mesler’s Robert Walker, our senses are stretched taut in this immersive ride into the underworld of the homeless and the lost.”

Morowa Yejidé, Author of Time of the Locust

 “Richly imagined, intense and vivid, Corey Mesler’s Robert Walker will take you down some byways you haven’t trod before.  Mesler writes with rare energy in this well-told tale.  A memorable novel.”

Steve Yarbrough, author of Visible Spirits and The Realm of Last Chances

 “I read Corey’s new novel ROBERT WALKER in one sitting yesterday because every time I put it to one side to do something else I found myself picking it back up again just to read a little bit more. I want to talk about it to lots of people, especially people who knew Jerry Hoffman, Dancing Jimmy and a few other Memphis luminaries vaguely or specifically referenced in it.”

–Chris Ellis, star of The Devil’s Rejects and The Dark Knight Rises

Robert Walker cover1

2 new poems

….here in Circle Show:,%20Volume%2014%20Summer%202016%20Online%20Final.pdf

One new poem about my dad

…here at The Courtship of Winds:!corey-mesler/cgu