The Boulevard of Broken Discourse, Poems by Matthew Freeman

The Boulevard of Broken Discourse ($11.95, 140 pp, ISBN: 978-1-60381-136-1), is a book of poems by St. Louis poet Matthew Freeman. Coffeetown published Freeman’s collection, Darkness Never Far, in 2010. In May of 2014, Matthew won The Graduate Poetry Prize from the University of Missouri, St Louis.

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Critics have high praise for Freeman’s poetry:

“Gritty and real, full of personality (and personalities), urban St. Louis scenery and experience”— J. Gordon,

“Simultaneously hip, funny, and sad”—Dorothea Grossman, Poet

“A microscope into the world of an extraordinarily talented schizophrenic”—Suzanne Shenkman

Matthew Freeman’s poems explore the difficulty of navigating and making peace with an environment that is both mentally and physically confusing. For many years Matthew struggled with mental illness and his experiences have fed his unique perspective. Thanks to the newest treatments, he is able to give voice to subjects that in the past would have been consigned to silence. His home of St. Louis, Missouri provides the setting for many of his poems and is a constant source of inspiration.

Matthew Freeman discovered he was a poet in high school, at the outset of a tumultuous time that would eventually see him hospitalized and diagnosed with schizophrenia. After he began his recovery, he went on to graduate from Saint Louis University, where he was twice awarded The Montesi Prize for his poems. The Boulevard of Broken Discourse is his fourth published collection. He is Poet in Residence at Adapt, Missouri.

The Boulevard of Broken Discourse is available in Kindle ($4.95) and print editions on,,,, and Amazon Japan. Bookstores and libraries can purchase books wholesale through or Ingram. Libraries may also contact Follett Library Resources and Midwest Library Services.


We were riding toward the East Side

me and Hollander and Al—I was sitting

up front between them—Hollander was fuming

but Al was cool (which is another poem—

why Al is always so cool) and I felt that

hatred void coming from Hollander—hey

Hollander, I said, what is it, man, hey,

can you ever forgive me—I don’t think so,

he said, I don’t think I ever can—oh damn,

I was rollicking, what did I do wrong, Hollander—

he turns to me and explains—

you called me “avocado numb nuts!”

“Avocado numb nuts!” Oh, man, we were

just kids, Hollander, we were fucking with each other,

we were busting each other’s chops, and

plus I don’t even know what “avocado numb nuts” means!

Nonetheless, he posits, you called me it. So then

he went back silently fuming and all hope aside

I knew I would never get forgiven—I’d

crossed some symbolic chaotic line, I’d

accidentally given voice (when we were just kids)

to something that dove into the tight structure of reality and exploded—

Hollander would never speak to me again—Al was

cool and hadn’t said a thing—what would become of Al—

he’d go on to buy a mansion—

but this all arrested me terribly and I tell

you that night I was completely

unable to enjoy myself at the strip club.

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