the fruit of the tree
(selected early poems)
This collection samples the early poetry of Ty Bard, prior to his long hiatus from the art. Consequently, this volume is eclectic – in both subject matter and poetic style. Although the poems selected include both free verse and patterned verse, they all exhibit the strong rhythms and robust phrasing for which he is noted. Although 'the fruit of the tree' is eclectic, there is an overarching theme woven through the volume. Western culture has embraced materialism, scientific determinism, humanism, and nihilism which have, in turn, eroded the bulwarks of faith and absolute truth which formerly provided meaning, purpose, and direction. The poems in 'the fruit of the tree' both describe this erosion and ultimately affirm that although "truth is always filtered through experience," through that experience, we discover "life is a shell we crawl out of to seek the sky."
Readers of On the Roofs of Zion – Poems after a Long Hiatus will find a much more prevalent poetic persona in the early poems selected for this volume. Because the poetic persona is more often in the foreground, 'the fruit of the tree,' is tinged with a more personal, confessional, and emotional aura. Even so, these early poems evince the same organic structure as his later poems and create the distinctive poetic voice, "neither reactionary, nor revolutionary," which defines Mr. Bard's lyric poetry.