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Relationship Determines Decision

poems by Peter Hoheisel

HONORABLE MENTION in the Poetry Category
2020 Royal Dragonfly Book Award

Print (softcover) $14.95  


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In its triune sections, Relationship Determines Decision explores a lifetime of relationships formed “With the Earth,” “With Others,” and “With Ourselves” via free verse. Presenting himself as one among infinite perspectives within the symbiosis of life, shaped by and shaping all that is encountered along the way, the poet patiently calls for a return to a communal and holistic mindset amidst prevailing megalomania.

POETRY / General

ISBN: 978-1-951651-06-0 (print; softcover; perfect bound)

LCCN: 2020930091

Released 1-21-2020

118 pages

Author Biography

Peter Hoheisel has published poems in national publications, such as The Nation, and many regional ones, including the Langdon Review, Grasslands Review, Nebo, and Iconoclast. He was chair of the department of religion and philosophy at Lon Morris College in Jacksonville, Texas, and also taught creative writing, literature, and composition. Before moving to Texas, Hoheisel was awarded numerous grants to teach poetry in schools through the Michigan Council for the Arts and the Texas Commission for the Arts.


“It is fitting that the final poem of this collection by Peter Hoheisel is entitled ‘What the Monk Knows,’ for Hoheisel is a bit of a wandering monk himself, always seeking spiritual discoveries in the elemental — wind, river water, star shine, ‘trout with blazing red bellies.’ Poem after poem probes everyday surfaces for  ‘the shining core of insideness, /the center of things.’

“Theology dominates these poems, and if it is at times an uneasy one, it ultimately radiates a reassuring faith. Of equal importance is the recurring motif of silence, a monastic hunger for quietude that offers both solace and salvation. Collectively, these poems echo the Psalmist’s ancient injunction: ‘Be still, and know that I am God.’

“If you subscribe to this famous imperative, if you seek mindfulness amidst the distracting clamor of our postmodern world, you will find much to admire in this new collection by Peter Hoheisel.”
— Randall R. Freisinge is the author of Windthrow and Salvage

“Reading these poems — with their depth and width and breadth of clarity — brings joy on two levels. First, the artistry shines through. Peter Hoheisel writes with skill reflecting a lifetime of philosophy learned and lived. Second, he understands humor and pain, joy and grief. This volume can be read and understood easily enough, but the gentle simile or the surprising metaphor (and vice versa) yield a rich experience apart from mere appreciation. What a treasure.”
— Mary Ann Taylor is an English professor and blogs at

Articles and Reviews


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