Hypothetically Speaking, by MK Sukach

Hypothetically Speaking, by MK Sukach


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Hypothetically Speaking, by MK Sukach is the Winner of the 2016 Encircle Publications Annual Chapbook Contest

Encircle Publications is thrilled to announce that MK Sukach’s chapbook manuscript Hypothetically Speaking is the winner of the 2016 Encircle Publications Annual Chapbook Contest.

Poems in Hypothetically Speaking deal with anxiety, fear, suffering, revenge, deceit, and self-loathing. Sukach tips the scales off of this chaos and confusion with the edifice of philosophy. The result is a wonderfully if ironically jeweled collage of stoic poetic nuggets both rich and meaningful. Hypothetically Speaking is both a fun and thoughtful read certain to entertain.

Praise for Hypothetically Speaking:

“How many of us ever made it whining about the rules,” MK Sukach asks rhetorically in one of his poems. Indeed, this collection enjoys fracturing and remaking the rules in poem after poem. Subversive and darkly ebullient, Sukach turns clichés on their heads and illuminates the genealogy of our inclinations towards war and political intrigue, then remakes a world fashioned from sleight-of-hand language, occasional references to classic thinkers, and found objects from the urban mess of contemporary life. His vision is not a redeeming one, but his poems are uplifting for their playfulness and deft intelligence.

—Leslie Ullman, author of Progress on the Subject of Immensity and Library of Small Happiness.

In Hypothetically Speaking, MK Sukach explores those intersections where language and culture, history and the present unsettled moment meet and are realigned.  Sukach thoroughly respects his medium—our language—its chameleon abilities, its subtleties and argot, its way of being both self-conscious and self-forgetful. Thus these brilliant and ever-shifting poems, in turn apocalyptic, tender, ironic, surreal, mythic and deeply, darkly funny.With razor-sharp wit, Sukach cuts through our public delusions. His voice is at once deliciously playful and as he says in one poem, “pleasantly inconsolable.”  This is savvy, surprising, spot-on, and crucial writing.

—Betsy Sholl, former Poet Laureate of Maine, author of Otherwise Unseeable.

MK Sukach’s meticulous details open onto unforeseen vistas. An original mind at work here—at once muscular and rawboned—the sound of fiercely intelligent writing. Indulge yourself . . .

—Donald Anderson, author of Fire Road and Gathering Noise from My Life: A Camouflaged Memoir.

Sample of M.K. Sukach’s poetry


Regret is approximately 3lbs,
roughly what you’d expect
in a good sledgehammer
for household uses,
i.e., it’s a reorganizing principle.
Grief, paradoxically, is absent of mass
but present, heavier, and determined
by the position of other, say, well-adjusted people
whose light cannot pass through her,
our subject, slipping, inconsolable,
to different, occluded areas of the room.
Then there’s disaster–the worst.
Actuarially: a total loss, which we posit as calamity,
technically, for her, suggests she is out,
beyond any known centers of gravity…
isolate, e.g., in a phone booth, where she is,
e.g., where she isn’t in a phone booth.
She may feel her heart is like a stone that floats,
but, really, the heart is the effect of attenuation,
properly, the dissipation that results from hitting rock
bottom, which is how the bed feels, her heart
an irony of loss, only present in one sense,
in another, an enucleated abstraction
drowning her in the shallow end
while everyone, observing from the edge,
is advising her to just stand.

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