Synopses & Reviews
“This poet takes risks: not easy, her originality waits and gives life. In Danziger’s flying language and deep intelligence, here are grief not formalized, joy not smoothed out.”—Jean Valentine, Brittingham Prize judge and National Book Award winner
“Jazzy Danziger is the girl next door of American letters, giving voice to the ordinary with an astonishing grace, language at once elegant and fierce, deft and dazzling. The divergence of her themes electrifies the graceful surfaces of her work with intricacy and desire. Darkroom is a luminous, stunning debut.”—Alice Anderson, author of Human Nature
“These are challenging poems, deeply invested in Danziger’s own self, turned inward. And yet the lyricism, the long casts of memory draw you into the past. Danziger’s chant of her own pain translates into the memories we all have of childhood, as we view her album of adolescence and growth.”—St. Louis Magazine Blog
“Ruthlessly honest and unblinking, the poems in Jazzy Danziger’s debut collection, Darkroom, shimmer on the page.”—Riverfront Times
"Centaur testifies to the grave fact that humans can harm each other until they want to trade in their bodies: 'I want to feel alive,' says the man seeking to become a centaur as the book begins. This is a masterful poetic debut marked by lyric brilliance and difficult, yet gleaming, wisdom."—Katie Ford, author of Colosseum
"The terrific, turbulent poems in Greg Wrenn's Centaur seem as much etched as written—acid-exact, black promises on white possibilities, lines and space crosshatched with thrilling precision. These poems will startle you at first, and then haunt you long after."—J. D. McClatchy, editor of The Yale Review and author of Hazmat
"These powerful poems mark the aliveness, suffering, and sensuality of the body. They map out erotic adventures and the loneliness of human need. They flout danger with superb lyric craft. But they don't stop there. Each poem offers a paradigm of yearning held together by a rare excellence of language and music. This is a marvelous debut collection."—Eavan Boland, author of A Journey with Two Maps
"The magic here, like the best magic, transforms with each encounter. Fluid, tempered, atmospheric: Centaur is a beautiful, encompassing debut."—Terrance Hayes, Brittingham Prize judge and National Book Award winner
“Greg Wrenn’s poems are quietly allusive and deep; his completely original style . . . perhaps shows the direction our poetry is headed during this new era of the written word’s ascendancy.”—The Antioch Review
“Alison Stine renders landscape with a riveting, almost gothic ferocity. The universe of Wait crackles, burns brightly, while also leading into a darkness of its own. The collection is impressive not just for its immense formal grace, but also for the adamant, forceful desire—its ‘call of skin’—that singes through every poem.”—Maggie Nelson, author of Jane: A Murder
In the aftermath of her mother’s suicide, one young woman recognizes the malleability of her reality. From her adolescence in the flat, hot Floridian landscape to a tectonic Missouri adulthood, a girl shaped by grief is compelled to create and manipulate her image of the world. As her dreams become indistinguishable from daily life, she begins to question memory, identity, and the function of love.
Employing photography as its central metaphor, Darkroom tackles the tangled relationship between memory and mourning by exploring an artist’s impossible attempt to re-create the object of loss.
Greg Wrenn's debut collection opens with a long poem in which a man undergoes surgery to become a centaur. Other poems speak in voices as varied as those of Robert Mapplethorpe, Hercules, and a Wise Man at the birth of Jesus. Centaur skitters along the blurred lines between compulsivity and following one's heart, stasis and self-realization, human and animal. Here, suffering and transcendence are restlessly conjoined.
Part fairy tale, part gothic ballad, Wait chronicles in poems the year before a young girl’s marriage.
In a small town under a spell, a child bride prays for the sheriff’s gun. Iron under a bed stops a nightmare. The carousel artist can carve only birds. Part fairy tale and part gothic ballad, Wait spans a single year: the year before a young woman’s marriage. Someone is always watching—from the warehouse, from the woods. And on the outskirts of town, someone new is waiting.
About the Author
Greg Wrenn, a native of northeast Florida, is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow and a recipient of the Lyric Poetry Award from the Poetry Society of America. His work has appeared in New England Review, The American Poetry Review, The Yale Review, and elsewhere. He is a Jones Lecturer at Stanford University.
Table of Contents
All the Animals Are Birds
Letter after Dismemberment
After the Party
Rabbit of the World
The Ripper's Bride
The Interpreter Tries to Blend In
The Ladder Tree
The Red Thread
Scissors, Hammer, Hoof Pick, Awl