"How quickly we forget the courage required of love, all the risk and awkward beauty giving our lives gravity. Odd Bloom Seen from Space, Timothy Daniel Welch’s debut poetry collection, offers a rare glimpse into our humanity, spanning adolescence, romance and mythology, reminding the reader of the fragile, heroic, and more often, absurd nature of the spirit. Funny, frank and formally innovative, Welch has crafted a unique voice. Vulnerable and equally unflinching, these poems render nervous laughter."
—Amaud Jamaul Johnson, author, Darktown Follies
“In these poems, Welch is an attentive watcher who has ‘lived most of my life alone.’ From the little distance he cultivates, he manages a detailed view of the big picture. He is sometimes at the seashore, where he can observe children at play, seals ‘lifting their backs / upon the water,’ and wonders, ‘is there a story to each wave that crosses the sea?’ He looks to the distant shores of Greece, both for its timeless myths that are the roots of Western thought, and perhaps for more personal connections. This is classical poetry set in our time, with room for ‘Owls and their Michael Jackson / hooting in the trees’ and ‘reading Anna Karenina / on a Kindle.’ The ‘odd bloom’ of the title is an astronaut’s vision of the towers collapsing on 9/11, though Welch sees it ‘peripherally, which is what this is, some side-line / reflection’; history seems to happen to other people, in other places, affording Welch his detached viewpoint from which a kind of unbiased truth might be reported. Finally, for all its subtle sarcasms, this is a deeply earnest book, one sensitive soul’s reckoning with a troubled age.”
— Craig Morgan Teicher, judge, Iowa Poetry Prize
"Like the grand subject of Timothy Daniel Welch’s poem “Nose Of Least Comparison,” Welch’s debut book is wonderfully distinct, handsomely made, and exhibits those historical pressures and markers that make for a very particular and brilliant consciousness. The reader of Odd Bloom Seen from Space is in for surprise after surprise. Not once could I figure where Welch was taking me at the start of a poem, and the pleasure of this poet's sure-handed, illuminating guidance is immense. This is a book that earns such trust and affection, for its intellectual honesty, formal expertise, capacious heart, and occasionally roguish wit. Truly, I can’t say enough good things about it. It’s one of the best debut books I’ve read in many years."
—Erin Belieu, author, Slant Six
“In language gemlike, shining, Timothy Daniel Welch invokes the labors of Hercules, an odd bloom seen from space, a mother’s death, fishing, snow, and an ode to a nose, to embrace the vagaries of memory and the mysteries of time and the universe, in poems that continually seduce and surprise. ‘Imagine a book of poems catching fire in the afternoon,’ and you will know this book of marvels, this marvel of a book.”
— Ronald Wallace, author, For Dear Life
“In rich and heartbreaking lines, Welch gives meaning to our designs—cubist, elliptical, often erotic. ‘There’s beauty in wanting more / time to be young, to sing and seize it in a photograph or / music video before it goes from us.’”
—Sandra Alcosser, author, Except by Nature