Monica Recommends - Dispatch #5, Poetry Edition
Not sure what book to dive into next? Look no further! Monica recommends these poetry collections!
And Yet by Kate Baer
For fans of Mary Oliver! This collection viscerally unpacks the bare bones of living and emotion, spanning topics of motherhood, marriage, & misogyny in a deeply self-reflective and bold way, pausing on the important moments in one's life and conveying it all in a succinct demonstration of humor and wit. A very beautiful and immersive read!
Magnolia, 木蘭 by Nina Mingya Powles
A collection of the body and the senses by New Zealand poet and zinemaker, these poems are dreamy yet insightful, vibrant and detailed, a reading experience that haunts the mind. Powles explores Asian identity and the boundaries of language as she skillfully experiments with poetic forms. Interpretation is fluid here, with each reader pulling something different and equally vivid from the text!
Bewildered by Jessie Ulmer
One of my favorite small press releases from last year! Ulmer skillfully reimagines the tale of Hansel & Gretel in a combination of speculative poetry and prose including blackouts of Maria Tatar's original texts, and explores the way in which people experience, remember, and process trauma, and the ways in which fairy tales are recycled and retold. Queer, magical, sad, funny, and incredibly striking, Ulmer achieves what many collections only merely attempt, and has created a collection that will follow you long after the pages are closed!
Boleyn by Juliette Sebock
Transcending history and fiction both, this collection subverts patriarchal tradition and weaves an immortal tale that grants voice and perspective to a woman scorned, at once speaking to the universal nature of stolen narratives and creating an acute and faithful examination of Anne Boleyn within the context of a dangerous, male-dominated society. Sebock's work is astounding, enchanting, and as well-researched as it lyrical.
Requeening by Amanda Moore
Using the matriarchal structure of the beehive, this collection explores concepts of matriarchal roles and motherhood, traverses the reality of human relationships and experiences, the nature of mother-daughterhood, and doesn't shy away from the inevitable collapse of the hive structure and the "requeening" that follows. These poems are liminal in form and topic both, and range from poetic to hybrid forms in a way that suits the combined physical and emotional nature of the narrative.