Light Turnout

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Finishing Line Press

Gary Percesepe’s LIGHT TURNOUT is a romp through a world we mostly recognize, made brilliant and startling through language well-chosen. From erasing the neighbors to visits by dead sisters and angels in the night, the poems create a belief system we want to embrace and cause the reader to applaud a spirited writer reworking the universe for our delight. In these grim times, LIGHT TURNOUT reminds us that the root word of “amuse” is “muse”—and here we have a perfect muse and host, creating a presence we are glad to step into. “Whatever happens today, we are here,” —glad to participate in these giddy, life-affirming acts of invention.

–Maxine Chernoff

Each piece in Gary Percesepe’s Light Turnout is its own world – some surreal, some crass, some beautiful. Despite the brevity of these pieces, or perhaps because of it, this collection is vast. Cable bridges “sing in the wind like giant harps,” “tangled trees look like seaweed in the twilight,” yet in others, the characters are “survivors of a dead mother and no-account father.” This collection has scope. I loved each small world I inhabited while reading it.

–Shaindel Beers


Gary Percesepe’s latest collection of poetry, brilliantly captures the existential mood of the times. Somewhere moonflowers shimmer in street dust, a long-lost father works late at night alone in a parallel world, and we may wake up one day and find ourselves covered in covfefe, searching for the last fallen ice cube in the fridge.

–Morgan Harlowe


Percesepe’s voice is one of shrewdness, marked by a rare combination of emotional astuteness and a penetrating depth of vision.”

–Nicolette Wong