Twilight Innings: A West Texan on Grace and Survival.
By Robert A. Fink
Foreword by R. S. Gwynn. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press, 2006. xvi, 152 pages. ISBN 0896725847 $24.95 cloth http://www.ttup.ttu.edu/
Robert A. Fink is W. D. and Hollis R. Bond Professor of English and Director of Creative Writing at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. He is known as the author of several books of poetry, but Twlight Innings collects essays from eleven diverse sources. He takes readers from his childhood and rearing in East Texas, to college, to Vietnam, and finally to Abilene where the sparseness of topography, sound, and people permit healing of wartime assaults, assuaged by academic acceptance of his poetic and Christian sensibilities. The Abilene sparseness is enriched by the common wealth shared by many places. He records “Accepting the call to Abilene means you’re among people who love a lot more than poetry.”
Old friends and ghosts sway amid students, family, and school counselors. They populate home, school, Sunday school, the rangeland, and the Guadalupe Mountains. Prairie Dog baseball enlivens metaphor, stabilizes reality and rescues the perishing.
Fink would offer you a hard rubber sphere wrapped in strings, covered by soft leather and ask you to feel the stitches. Take it.