Poet John Yamrus suggests, “Ignore that expiration date!”


[Editor's note: John, like artist Eric Armusik, who was the subject of Thursday's article in The Boyertown Area Expression, devotes every day to his art--writing poetry, in John's case--and also to the necessary business of his art--getting his poetry published and getting it in front of reader's eyes through his promotional efforts on social and traditional media. Success doesn't happen without effort. Both artists work hard every day at their art and the business of it. I admire that. ~Jane]

by John Yamrus

added note--November 13, 2023: Hot on the heels of THE STREET, my new memoir...comes PEOPLE (and other bad ideas)...my brand new book just published by the fine people at Meat For Tea Press! All new poems with an introduction by small press legend Jeff Weddle.
If you can, please support this wonderful small publisher (and me!)...and pick up a copy...for yourself or as a gift for the reader or writer in your family! Christmas is fast approaching and it'd make a fine gift...at least i think so! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CN6X85VF/ref=sr_1_21?keywords=john+yamrus&qid=1699878453&sr=8-21 Thank you! John Yamrus


Full disclosure: I’ve known Jane Stahl, editor of The Boyertown Area Expression for years and she’s always been more than supportive of any writing project I’ve come up with and this one’s not any different.

Full disclosure #2: When I approached Jane about maybe getting something in The Expression about my new book, she said, “put something together and do it in your own words and let’s see what happens...”

Full discl....aw, heck, enough of this disclosure stuff...I’m 72 years old and have been publishing my whole life, with several dozen books under my rapidly aging belt...but this new one feels different...I feel different...not only about this new book (which I’m very proud of), but about everything that has to do with my writing and maybe even with the way I look at the world.

To be clear...this new book, THE STREET, is a look back, more than 50 years, at a place and time that is rapidly fading from memory. I wrote it to get down on paper what it was like for me growing up in the coal region in the late 50s and early 60s, less than wealthy, in a place that seemed to have a bar and a church on every corner and the smell of stuffed cabbage, potato pancakes and kielbassa coming out of every kitchen on every street.

I like the book (very much), but in thinking about it I realized that I got out of it something much more than just the writing itself...it was a goal, for sure, but it also gave me something to look forward to every day. Something new and exciting!

Here I was (or am)...I’m 72...and I’m not spending my time making plans for any class reunion or (like Al Bundy) dreaming about some game-winning touchdown I scored back in ’69. No, I’m still thinking...still producing...still having fun. And I realized that even though I am of a certain age, I still have a whole lot more to give and a whole lot more to do! And there’s a whole ton of other “senior citizens” out there who can do the same as me...who can get up off their wrinkly old rear ends and do something.

Life’s too short and it shouldn’t end the day you retire! For me, I find I’m busier than ever. I’ve actually published more work and done more good than I did 20 years ago! I get up every morning and I’ve got a purpose and a plan and I’ve got energy and drive...and you (dear reader) can do it, too! Maybe you can’t write a book about it, but there’s tons of vital and interesting things available to you. Things you’ve always wanted to try or taste or feel or share!

Go ahead! What are you waiting for?

I know you want to do it...get out and live!


John Yamrus is the author of nearly 40 books, his latest is The Street. It’s on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CMJHB2S1?linkCode=ssc&tag=onamzathinsli-20&creativeASIN=B0CMJHB2S1&asc_item-id=amzn1.ideas.1T5FJB96438FO&ref_=aip_sf_list_spv_ofs_mixed_m_asin

Amazon offers, a statement from Cultural Critic Justine Jones: “In the raw pages of The Street, memories are the leaves that fall, covering the gritty pavement of existence.” And describes the book: “Back in print for the first time in several years...Memory Lane and RMA, the memoirs by John Yamrus, widely recognized and acclaimed as the modern master of minimalism and neo-noir poetry. Originally published as separate volumes, they are now presented for the first time ever...complete... and fully restored...in one volume, now titled simply: The Street.”

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