Cheapside Afterlife, published December 2021 by Longleaf Press, reimagines the life of the 18th-century British poet Thomas Chatterton. Now available:

“You want coruscating imagery and serious slapstick verbal hijinks with fantastic mouth-feel? You want frolicking, untrammeled effusions that would make Fanny Hill kick up her skirts and yell for more? You want a supercharged drag-race through the heart of a ‘complete genius and a complete rogue,’ father to the great Romantics, dead by his own hand at 17? You want cutting edge verse that makes your brain bleed with delight? You want George Rawlins’ Cheapside Afterlife my friend.”

—Charles Harper Webb, author of Sidebend World

“From shag-bags to resurrectionists; from The Murder Act of 1752 to la fée verte; from patter flash to the Spanish itch, this cabinet of wonders is a hard-won elegy to, and romp through, Tom Chatterton’s moment. Stevens’ notion of poetry as The Supreme Fiction applies here. Built on wonders like Barth’s The Sot Weed Factor and Berryman’s Homage to Mistress Bradstreet, this sequence gives mouth to mouth to a split second in our history. These wonderfully wrought 21st-century sonnets seat the reader across the pub table from a burned-out 18th-century 17-year-old poet, pamphleteer, impoverished con man and pornographer, whose Friar Rowley and Polly Rumsey leave me astonished and wanting more, whose brilliance and suicide set the minds of the Romantic Poets on fire. Rawlins’ Cheapside Afterlife is a gift. What are you waiting for?”

— Roger Weingarten, author of The Four Gentlemen and Their Footmen