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To be a first-class poet requires a fluency of language, mas­tery of a vocabulary sufficient to express seminal, original thoughts set down with rhythm, with imagery, and with de­scriptive evocation that communicates flaw­lessly with the recipient of the poetry of verse.  Such is the case with the poetry of E.M. Schorb.

  —The Midwest Book Review



Words in Passing

A story-teller's gift for selecting and relating the points he wishes to make, combined with a dramatist's flair for moving the points into place, make many of Schorb's poems memorable, as in "Obituary" and "Dirge for the  Dead Students."

—ETC., A Journal of General Semantics



Dirge for the Dead Students

"Dirge for the Dead Students" was widely circulated on college campuses after the tragic events of May, 1970.

Collected Stories

Stories previously published in literary journals and magazines from around the world.

A Portable Chaos - 2021 Revised


The story opens with a stream-of-consciousness flashback to a childhood incident that resembles James Joyce's 'Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man,' which gains significance as the novel unfolds, and you come to appreciate it. The main character is a decent guy overflowing with untapped potential, who walks away from opportunities and the wrong sort of success and follows his bliss as a poet. After a pretty squalid time living 'la vie Boheme' (vividly written, conjuring up the ghosts of the 1960's past, but squalid, nevertheless), he emerges from the slough and finds validation, the girl, fame, fortune, contentment, and reconciliation with all those pesky childhood demons. This is a well-plotted, well-characterized, and solidly written story. A Portable Chaos has everything you want in good literature—poignant writing, drama, and redemption.


—Christopher Klim, Award Citation

Dates and Dreams

Short Fictions, Prose Poems, Cartoons

Five and Ten

 Five and Ten, A Fairy Tale, a Few Poems, and a Fable is a collection of previously published stories and poems by author E.M. Schorb. The stories and poems are accompanied by a small number of sweet, hand drawn, illustrations by the author's daughters.


The collection includes six sweet and funny, cleverly crafted poems, "The Ghost Shop," "The Riddle of the Clock," "Monsieur Elan," "Instant Angels," "The Squid," "Sock Puppets Song," "The Horrid Truth," and "The Rubber Church."  My particular favourite from this collection is, "It Must Have Been the Angels," which beautifully describes the wonder of nature and humankind.


This is a beautiful collection of traditional poems and stories, reminiscent of a time gone by.  The book will appeal to readers who enjoy poetry and those who enjoy classic fables and fairy tales.  It is a wonderful, collection of poems, fables and fairy tales that will be treasured by readers far into the future.


Star rating: 5 Stars


R & R, A Sex Comedy

R & R, A Sex Comedy is a quietly hilarious read which, unique though it is, strikes me as belonging to the very league as the comic gems of Evelyn Waugh and Nathaniel West. It abounds in delectable tongue-in-cheek wit. Your price of admission will be richly repaid by the character of Bettina Battle, a woman with all the subtlety of a battering ram, in hot pursuit of sexual satisfaction from Serge, the dorky antihero. Among its other distinctions, Resurgius is a masterpiece of style, so skillfully written that it would be hard to change a word without a worsening. This comes as no surprise; Schorb for a long while has stood out among our finer poets, with tremendous assets of imagination, powers of invention, and the ability to polish his words to a sheen. This is a book to give to discerning friends, to cherish on a permanent shelf, and to wolf down immediately, being regaled.

—X. J. Kennedy


Paradise Square

"It's a modern blend of literary history and spunky humor that deserves its Frankfurt nod."

Publishers Weekly


"Unlike the author's award-winning mystery, Paradise Square, what we know about the characters in Needleneck comes from what is going on inside their heads, an irresistibly authentic introduction. The environment crawls with detail, little of it pleasant, but much of it inspired. Needleneck is notable for considering the needs and ethics of living without the slightest philosophizing, using only the experiences of its characters to convey its viewpoint. A spectacular denoument."

—Joy Calderwood, Independent Reviews Site

The Journey

“The Journey,” together with some fine ancillary poems, is a major work by one of our most challenging and surprising poets: a profound exploration of dream that seeks to fathom the nature of reality. Stunningly beautiful passages of verbal music seem to leap off the page. In all his long career, E. M. Schorb has never given us anything more ambitious, more likely to last.


—X.J. Kennedy


E. M. Schorb’s “The Journey” navigates among dreams, déjà vu, premonitions, a carefully observed, scrupulously interrogated present and “a touch of the old moonglow.” Sometimes, he even seems to bring dispatches from “the undiscover’d country,” but he is always rooted in the world of the senses and the mind. It is a pleasure to travel with him.


—R. T. Smith


"The Journey” will take you deep into your mind and soul. You’ll ask “where does the sun come from,” you’ll try to “discover the source of pain” and you’ll “rejoin yourself, deserted long ago.” E.M. Schorb has discovered the ‘Higgs boson’ of the poetic world, the vision that binds it all.


—Pat Mullan

E.M. Schorb’s poems do for me what great poetry should do—they illuminate experience from the inside out. In his magnificent essay “Poetry and Meaning,” our late U.S. poet laureate Howard Nemerov writes that the whole job of poets is “getting it right in language.” In poetry that shimmers with luminosity, and with “the most tender touch imaginable,” E.M. Schorb is “getting it right” every time. Welcome to the “Hotel Paradiso,” where “The Journey” begins.


—Sander Zulauf

The Ideologues

A captivating collection of free-verse in disparate styles, touching on subjects that run the gamut from a revisionist view of the Trojan War to the wartime death of a brother to the New York Draft Riots of 1863. The title poem is a profoundly bitter indictment of those writers who prostitute their art to support fanatical revolutionary politics. Schorb's new book demonstrates a versatility in free verse that matches his proven ability as a formal poet.


—Joseph S. Salemi

Murderer's Day

"The poems of E.M. Schorb shine calmly even as they buzz with energy; are connaissant with the world and yet transcendent of it; make somehting deeply funny and yet highly sad—given a world and a time and a good mind's eye. This is the work of a mature intelligence, its ironies unadulterated by cynicism, and its swells informed by understatement. A feisty book, a confident book, and in its own way, a furiously festive one."

—Heather McHugh, award citation