In Dan Beachy-Quick’s An Impenetrable Screen of Purest Sky, a new release from Coffee House Press available for order online and at your fave local bookseller, the protagonist, whose name is Daniel is haunted by stories. His father, enslaved by devotion to a myth of his own, has vanished along with hiss mother and sister. His lover, Lydia, leaves him along with the novel he’s unable to complete thanks to quantum physics, which has fantasized the reliably ironclad “realness” of life itself. Meanwhile, a woman beneath the floorboards by name of Pearl lives out her own adventure paralleling Danniel’s.
With this contemporary fairy tale, Beachy-Quick has reimagined the autobiographical form to include the cast of archetypical legend. As ever, the self-editing tendency of human memory leaves truth telling uncertain, but now that quantum science has verified the existence of parallel “realitites,” dependence on the very concept of actuality itself is a gamble. Are you reading Moby Dick too? What effect will it have on your perception of this work? What is your relationship to the metaphysical wheelhouse of your own life?
Dan Beachy-Quick has written several books of poetry prior to composition of this novel, most recently one called Circle’s Apprentice, along with a number of chapbooks and two collaborations. He has written two other novels, namely A Whaler’s Dictionary and Wonderful Imaginations. He teaches in the MFA program at Colorado State University, and lives in Fort Collins with his wife an daughters. This reporter looks forward to an interview with him at some point in the near future.