“The Ballad of Jesus Ortiz” is Dana Gioia’s tribute to his great-grandfather, who was a vaquero back in the days of the Old West. According to Gioia, “He’s the only family member (that I’m aware of) who died in a bar, and thus the most ballad-worthy as well.” Just go and read!
“After the Sonogram,” by Ryan Wilson (who recently joined Dappled Things as an editor), has become one of the most-liked poems of 2017 on Verse Daily. Like “The Ballad of Jesus Ortiz,” “After the Sonogram” is driving and musical. And with another of his poems appearing on Poetry Daily, Wilson has reached two of the most widely-read poetry sites on the internet. Well done.