Reviews/Comments about The System is Broken

The System is Broken


"With this set of poems, Dr. Johnston becomes a word surgeon whose sensibilities combine to diagnose jammed arteries of the heart-system of a Democratic society which has been far too long egregiously disabled. This book is a blueprint for repair designed by a man who knows all too well the places where dreams have 'gone wrong' and driving the coast, for example, finds he's fully cognizant of 'those microscopic creatures' harbored, somehow, in a world the poet decides is worth redeeming: possibly by simply convincing the rest of us to 'praise / the delight / of all kinds of peace.'"

Michael C. Ford

"R.K. Johnston's book of poems The System Is Broken is one American citizen's bittersweet colloquy at sixty. Shamed by an imperialist national agenda that the planet has surely outgrown, Johnston finds in nature-the gnarled shapes of roots, 'the worn out bluffs and blue, blue sea' --a healing solace, and seeks out 'the stories / of little creatures.' This is a lovely, loving book."

Aram Saroyan
Poet, writer; playwright

"The System is Broken contains some lovely images such as '...a crab species / caked walked, angling here / and suddenly there.' And the 'I hear the moon is dead / how can that be / when it provides by its position, / the tides and waves of the gathering spring?' As the great world crumbles around us, he still finds a worthwhile world of nature and people about him."

Tom Ragle
Poet, President Emeritus of Marlbory College, Vermont

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