The Hub’s Virtual Gallery

 

Midwestern

Justin Hamm

Storm, Rural Missouri
 
Though the coming rain
announces itself by rustling
the distant corn,
the barns remain immutable
as weathered grey monks.
Without words, they pray
over the dog who sleeps
forever in his soil bed
beside the oranged relic
of a horse-drawn plow.
On rage the blood sugar wars.
The lust for nicotine continues.
The time-crumpled angels
pull on their Carhartt robes
and stand under wide awnings
as lightning unstitches the sky.
Here, every storm is forty nights
from stating the profound.
 
[from The Inheritance, Blue Horse Press, 2019]

Exhibit Statement

Justin Hamm’s photography and poetry show, Midwestern, depicts the rural and rustic beauty and decay of Missouri and Illinois through camera and pen. Drawn from his time intentionally lost on the backroads of the states he knows best,  Hamm’s work, visual and verbal, is equal parts inspection of the American mythos and testament against the worn-out adage that the Midwest is merely “flyover country.”

Artist Biography

Justin’s most recent books are The Inheritance: Poems and Photos and Midwestern, a book of photographs. He is the author of two other poetry collections, American Ephemeral and Lesson in Ruin. His poems, stories, photographs, and reviews have appeared in Nimrod, The Midwest Quarterly, Sugar House Review, Pittsburgh Poetry Review and a host of other publications. Recent work has also been selected for New Poetry from the Midwest (New American Press) and the Stanley Hanks Memorial Poetry Prize from the St Louis Poetry Center. Justin’s photographs have hung in the Art House Gallery in Fulton, Missouri and have earned a twelve-page, full-color feature in San Pedro River Review as well as the Inkslinger Award from Buffalo Almanack. His work has been or will be featured in solo exhibitions at Craft Beer Cellar in Columbia, Missouri, the Normal Public Library in Normal, Illinois, and the Mississippi River Gallery in Hannibal, Missouri. Justin works as the District Librarian at North Callaway R-1 Schools and lives in Mexico, Missouri, with his wife, Mel, and daughters, Abbey and Sophie.

 

Sponsored by
Rushville State Bank
100 E Lafayette St
Rushville, IL 62681
(217) 322-3323