Sledding on Hospital Hill:


In this new collection by a poet whom Edward Hoagland called, “the genuine article,” we find work that is grounded in its chosen territory (Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom) and that speaks to us clearly and directly. Kinsey is a poet of both place and people. In a voice that is at times gritty, confessional, humorous, and reflective (and always clear), he takes on real events and invests them with universal meaning. In a time when much poetry has become so oblique and opaque that it requires a scholarly interpreter, Kinsey’s clarity comes as welcome relief — dry, skeptical, and clean.

Leland Kinsey was a graduate of Lake Region Union High School and the University of Vermont and wrote eight volumes of poetry. His most recent collection was published in the spring, Galvanized: New and Selected Poems. Other volumes include his 2014 work, Winter Ready, a book-length narrative poem, The Immigrant’s Contract (Godine, 2008)in which Kinsey chronicles the life of a French-Canadian man who was his neighbor in North Troy, and Sledding on Hospital Hill (Godine, 2003).

Kinsey grew up the second of five siblings on a farm in South Albany. The rugged and beautiful region has been home to his relatives for more than two centuries: Kinsey’s Scottish Presbyterian ancestors cleared the woods with axes, saws and horses to settle four Northeast Kingdom towns: Albany, Craftsbury, Glover, and Greensboro.

Standing in a field in South Albany in the spring of 2014, looking at the land around him, Kinsey said: “Here we go, I can see my world. If there’s a physical center to my universe, this may be it.”