Department of English
126 E. 10th St.
Holland, MI 49423
English Department Faculty
Adjunct Associate Professor
Hope College (1976); M.A., University of Iowa (1980).
Expertise: Expository Writing, Teaching
Writing, World Literature, and Contemporary Poetry.
Selected Works: Psychological Clock (Pudding
House, 2007), Lost Enough (Finishing Line, 2007), A Little Instability
without Birds (Finishing Line, 2006).
Contact: Academic Support Center, VanZoeren
Since Everything Is All I've Got (2012).
Poet Fred Marchant, author of the collections "The Looking House" and "Full
Moon Boat," has described the collection as "D.R. James's book
"It brims with the hard-earned wonder that comes through love
and loss, and through his assay of the mysteries of the heart, the
psyche, or the soul," Marchant said. "These poems chart his
journey to those moments when we sense that our lives - in joy and
sorrow - are truly here and inescapably now and everything is all we
Psychological Clock (2007).
"This chapbook of 24 poems, in a variety of forms, includes some of D. R.
James's most exicting work: "The Day I got My Timing Down," "New
Year's Resolution," "Lakeside Birdfeeder, Wet Snow," "The
Same Game," "Lakeside Birdfeeder, Squirrels," "Field Notes,
from an Old Chair," "April Fool," "School Bus," "Sons
and a Father," "I Don't know the Biochemsitry of a Hummingbird," "One
Kind of Faith," "To Be: It's not a Question," "Whose Life
Is It, Anyway?", "Great Blue Heron," "Qualifications," "If
Only I moved by Instinct," "A Couple of October Options," "World
Lit. Postcards," "Only This Just In," "Recycling," "Man
to Man with the Folks' New Condo," "Guano Glorioso," "Pscyhological
Clock," "Bon Voyage!"
Lost Enough (2007)
"This chapbook of 24 poems is "fictionally autobiographical" and
spins off of William Stafford's epigraph in the title poem: "If
you're lost enough, then the experience of now is your guide to what
comes next." Says the author, "We're all a product of our pasts,
yes, but we really only live a series of now's, and that done consciously
frees us from what may feel like the lostness of inevitability. There
is always the next now." Reflecting on the book, Leah Maines, poet
and editor notes, "We are all lost in our own little ways, and James
reminds us that life is a mixed bag of memories....[These] poems serve
as revelations—life is about finding our way and losing our way,
and finding it again."
Little Instability without Birds (2006).
D. R. James's poems pull us away from the terrible onslaught of daily distraction
and lead us back to what matters. He invites us to settle down, maybe
in an isolated cabin where the coffee's hot, the weather cold, and
introduces us to a guy who welcomes us then talks about what is most
disquieting while pointing us toward the reasons to look out the window.
We feel somehow comforted and grateful just to be still in the mysterious
world. --Jack Ridl