Matthew Savoca’s debut poetry book, long love poem with descriptive title, seems like something a version of myself would write.

While reading it, I imagined Savoca – well rested, drinking “organic fair trade coffee from costa rica” – at a semi-cluttered desk, his hair a mess, staring at his laptop. I imagined him feeling calm, alert, and ‘alone in a good way,’ allowing him to focus on his poetry, uninhibited by thoughts of [anything/anyone] besides the subject(s) of his writing and his goals.

Parts of the book have been previously published, so I imagined him in different clothing each time: a maroon-colored v-neck t-shirt, a ‘charcoal-colored’ t-shirt, a white v-neck t-shirt, and always a pair of jeans.I imagined him drinking from a red ceramic mug.


I hadn’t been reading long love poem with descriptive title for long before I knew I was going to like it.I already felt pretty positively towards Savoca’s writing, having previously read a chapbook of his and his part in a split poetry chapbook with Brandon Scott Gorrell and Colin Basset.

I flipped to the author’s biography in the back of the book – “matthew savoca was born in 1982 in pennsylvania / he does not eat animals” – which I thought seemed funny and good.I turned to my friend Mallory who was sitting beside me and said, “This seems funny.This seems… good,” while pointing to the bio and grinning.She nodded and smiled a little.


Around 30 minutes later, I lifted my head.Mallory was missing.I stared blankly at the area in front of me for a period of time, thinking things like, ‘I…’ and ‘Mallory…’ until I saw her walking towards me.

She said, “How is it?” while pointing to long love poem with descriptive title.
I said, “I like it a lot.It kind of reminds me of cognitive-behavioral therapy by Tao Lin.”
She said, “Oh,” in a manner I perceived as ‘interpreting my statement as “meant to have a negative connotation.”’
I said “No – In a good way.Like… in a good way.”
She said, “Oh,” in a manner I perceived as ‘understanding enough of my statement for me to stop talking.’I opened the book to where my right thumb was marking the page.Resumed.


I noticed, after an amount of time, that I had been reading Savoca’s writing, to a large degree, like it was my own.Even small details like “saves the day (the early stuff)” seemed accurate in terms of my life.The writing style, thought process, and use of non sequitur all felt familiar too.

I laughed out loud at the line “do you want to knife each other?”
I smiled at the line “my new philosophy is / touch your hair a little”.
I stared with a serious facial expression at the line “i know i will never be able to accurately describe anything”.

Those are the categories into which I would classify all of the lines in long love poem with descriptive title, in terms of me; LOL, smile a little, and stare with serious facial expression.

After around an hour of continuous reading, I turned to Mallory and said, “I think I’m going to finish this now.”

She said, “Ok.”
I said, “I really like it.”
She said, “Good.”


long love poem with descriptive title reminded me of certain poems from during my nervous breakdown i want to have a biographer present by Brandon Scott Gorrell and cognitive-behavioral therapy by Tao Lin; both books I have read ~6 times each.The book had no page numbers, no capital letters, and was slim.Every line felt intentional, honest, and sincere.

When I finished the book, I said something indicating to Mallory that we could leave.

She said, “I want to take this,” while pointing at The Rules of Attraction by Bret Easton Ellis.

I said, “Ok – I’ll wait in the car.”

In my car, I thought about long love poem with descriptive title.I imagined Savoca sitting on a train in route to a foreign, ‘artsy’ country while listening to music through headphones and looking out a small square window at snow-covered mountains; a beat-up paperback novel in his lap.I thought about what would happen if Mallory got caught stealing, and whether or not I felt hungry.


It wasn’t until I began writing this review that I realized what I was really thinking about while reading long love poem with descriptive title.

The things I imagined – the maroon-colored shirt, the laptop, the desk – were mine.The red ceramic mug was mine too, inadvertently stolen from an ex-girlfriend.

I hardly gave a thought to Matthew Savoca or to his poetry book.

I really only thought about myself.


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JORDAN CASTRO (b. 1992) is the co-author of poetry chapbooks, Assuming Size and think tank for human beings in general (self-published, 2009). He is the author of No Ceilings (e-book, wtfpwm, 2009) and Orientation (e-book, Pangur Ban Party, 2009). He has been published widely on the internet. He maintains this blog. He can also be found on Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, and YouTube.

5 responses to “On Matthew Savoca’s ‘long love poem with descriptive title’ and Myself”

  1. mallory says:

    i liked reading this again, perhaps more this time

  2. Jimi says:

    Mind blowing / honestly honest.
    A little creepy.
    Like the cinematic ending.
    Cinema verite but book review.

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