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A veteran of the Iraq War, Hugh Martin is the author of the poetry collections In Country and The Stick Soldiers. His work has appeared in many magazines including The Atlantic, The New Yorker, The New York Times, GQ, and The Sun. He teaches at the U.S. Air Force Academy.

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Recent Publications

"Martin's work is spare and powerful, wise and charged with experience..."

-The Akron-Beacon Journal

The Kenyon Review

"The poet never forgets nor lets us forget that while many of these poems are set in Iraq, their subject is an imagined version of that place. It is a convergent construct of memory, history, and American imagination..."in country" does not refer to the past or present, but a state of malaise in which both past and present occur  and occur simultaneously. "In country" does not mean Iraq or Afghanistan, the United States or Syria: rather, it is a country they all inhabit, a warzone in which we all reside." 

Publisher's Weekly

"Martin...reckons with the tension between occupier and occupied in these winding, rhythmic lyrics. He delves into the paranoia of American soldiers as well as Iraqis' terror and defiance, glimpsed as an elderly farmer demands payment for a blown-up tractor: "In one hand he holds a long shovel,/ rusted spade up, & he stumbles toward us & shouts." Martin describes well...the banality of a battle zone: "At home, they don't know all I do:// aim at date palms." Meanwhile, military slang ("Hescos," "JP8," "terp") melds with poetic references: "No bombs but// in things. No IEDs but/ in things."  

Foreword Reviews

"In the Iraq edition of wartime for American soldiers, fear of being blown to pieces by hidden explosives frequently loses out to the wiliest enemy of all—boredom. This is the wartime footing—six years in an M1A1 Abrams tank—that Iraq War veteran Hugh Martin makes use of to create his own masterful poetry. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Grantland, and numerous other prestigious journals, and The Stick Soldiers, his first collection, won the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize."      
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