Brian Spears

Poet, Editor, Teacher, Blogger.

A Witness In Exile

A Witness in Exile is my first collection of poems. It’s published by Louisiana Literature Press. The cover was designed by Amy Letter, who also took the author photo, and the image on the cover is a piece called “Temptation” by Florida artist Judith Berk King.

If you purchase A Witness in Exile here ($5), I’ll sign it and ship it to you at my own expense. I’m using Paypal, but if for some reason you’d rather pay some other way, contact me via email at and we can make other arrangements.

I’m available to do readings, class visits (in person or online), and will consider pretty much anything.

Buy the book here. It’s a Donate button because for some reason WordPress and the Paypal “Buy it now” buttons don’t get along, but if you “donate” me $5.00, I’ll “donate” a book to you in return. And if there are any issues with payment or anything else, don’t hesitate to contact me.


  1. The books are beautiful and amazing!

    Comment by amy | January 17, 2011 | Reply

  2. Congratulations, Brian- this is an amazing accomplishment!

    Comment by Judy King | January 18, 2011 | Reply

  3. I’d like to know more about the press and how they arrived at your book.

    Comment by Stephen | January 23, 2011 | Reply

    • Louisiana Literature Press is run by Southeastern Louisiana University, which is where I was an undergraduate. They publish a handful of books every year as well as the journal Louisiana Literature. I’d published a handful of poems in the journal, so we had that as part of our history. I was talking with the editor online one evening about the difficulty of getting a book of poems into print outside the contest world and he simply said “if you still haven’t published your book in a year, send it to me.” There were some delays because of budgetary questions–the state of Louisiana started slashing funding for everything when the economy collapsed, and there were real questions whether the press would even survive. But they did and now we have the book.

      It was a case of having a personal relationship with the editor, one who was willing to take a chance on me and trust that I’d do whatever I could to sell the book. I have to do that because there’s no budget for anything available–no travel money, no advertising, not even really money to send out review copies. I’m working to set up readings locally and get the book carried in bookstores even though I won’t make any money off those sales just because I want to repay the press as much as I can for the faith they’ve showed in me.

      Comment by Brian | January 23, 2011 | Reply

  4. […] A Witness In Exile […]

    Pingback by And now for something completely different « Brian Spears | January 24, 2011 | Reply

  5. […] related to Briteny Spears however¬†he is the father of Brittany Spears. He is also the author of A Witness in Exile, forthcoming from Louisiana Literature Press. I read A Witness in Exile after a trip to the Florida […]

    Pingback by Brian Spears: A Witness In Exile « | January 24, 2011 | Reply

  6. Dude,

    TheRaven don’t do no poetry, being from South Jersey and all. I mean, by Jersey standards, poetry = Ted Leo. But anyone who interviews like you deserves a read. Not to mention your double break-out background. (No kids, BS wasn’t in prison).

    It’s on. Donation made (Nashville address).


    Comment by TheRaven | January 25, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks a ton, Raven. I’ll get it in the mail tomorrow. I hope you like it.

      Comment by Brian | January 25, 2011 | Reply

  7. […] A Witness In Exile […]

    Pingback by The other poetry project « Brian Spears | January 26, 2011 | Reply

  8. Congrats! I’m excited to read it.

    Comment by Valerie Wetlaufer | February 9, 2011 | Reply

  9. […] again, read the poem again, then I know I’ve found a poetry book I like. Brian Spears’ A Witness In Exile is such a […]

    Pingback by A view of exile: Brian Spears’ first book of poetry. « We Who Are About To Die | February 11, 2011 | Reply

  10. […] collection, Human Shade (published as part of the Lost Horse Press New Poets Series) and Brian Spears’ A Witness in Exile.¬† I want to have them both read by the weekend — now that is my kind of […]

    Pingback by Looming Deadlines « The Scrapper Poet | March 1, 2011 | Reply

  11. […] A Witness In Exile […]

    Pingback by Holy Crap « Brian Spears | March 15, 2011 | Reply

  12. I was hoping to find Zbigniew Herbert’s poem “Mr. Cogito On Upright Attitudes” online and, voila, there it was on your old blog – and so I discovered your work. As someone who lived in Coral Gables for seven years, I’m a little surprised (shocked, really) and delighted to find cognitive abilities and literary curiosity anywhere in South Florida. You must be very lonely! I’ll check out your work. Thanks for posting.

    Comment by Sebastian | May 4, 2011 | Reply

  13. […] A Witness In Exile […]

    Pingback by What Happens Post-Rapture? « Brian Spears | May 21, 2011 | Reply

  14. As usual, I’m late to the party, but my sincere congratulations to Spears, whom I term a “villanelliste extraordinaire” in “Down–But Not Out–In Mississippi and Elsewhere” (, where I mention “Not-Summer,” but a line that insists on a place in the forthcoming “Controversies, Connections, and Coincidences” is a truly covetable repeton–“Every poem I write is a history poem”–from yet another poem in that form. Bravo!

    Comment by Diann Blakely | September 19, 2012 | Reply

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