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The Sun & the Moon by Kristina Marie Darling Now Available!

 In poems lit by an incendiary marriage, Kristina Marie Darling traces a story that begins, as stories often do, “as a small mark on the horizon.” Brave and haunted, these poems burn down to ash and winter, daring to unlock the spell of memory’s silver flashings. The small remains, like distant stars, make a moving portrait.


—Mary Ann Samyn, author of My Life in Heaven


“By then I could barely speak,” Kristina Marie Darling writes, in a collection that mirrors the dissolution of a relationship: mythologizing, erasing, reinventing, and, finally, reinvestigating itself. The Sun & the Moon is rooted in the liminal, where the ghosts that populate these poems become more human than the couple whose house they inhabit, whose drawers they open, whose clothes they wear. Everything is simultaneously burning and freezing, brightening and dimming, so that the stagnancy of a relationship becomes eerily unsettling—claustrophobic and violent—a place for knives and locks and ash. “It’s the strangest things that keep me from leaving.” It’s the same devastatingly strange things that will make readers stay.

—Corey Van Landingham, author of Antidote


“From what I understood, the ghosts had always been volatile.” Kristina Marie Darling’s The Sun & the Moon is a homage to the mutability of consciousness and memory. These prose-poems and erasures achieve a kind of Victorian noir by turning the cluttered, dangerous spaces of desire and mourning into irreducible images. Smudged with ash, soot and dark red stars, The Sun & the Moon renders a universe of jagged, dazzling relics that haunt and captivate us long after the book is finished.”

—Kara Candito, author of Spectator and Taste of Cherry


Kristina Marie Darling’s The Sun & the Moon takes as its metaphor the astronomical clock. The “I” and “you” of these poems are celestial bodies that inhabit the same system, yet are ever distant from one another. These poems become rooms of a gothic house haunted by ghosts that the speaker appears to be one of, at times, and threatened by, at others. The Sun & the Moon is a dreamscape of remnants—ashes, envelopes, and knives—that mark moments of misconnection as though erased from memory.

—Tyler Mills, author of Tongue Lyre


Kristina Marie Darling is the author of seventeen books, which include Melancholia (An Essay) (Ravenna Press, 2012), Petrarchan (BlazeVOX Books, 2013), and a forthcoming hybrid genre collection called Fortress (Sundress Publications, 2014). Her awards include fellowships from Yaddo, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, and the Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers, as well as grants from the Kittredge Fund and the Elizabeth George Foundation. She is currently working toward a Ph.D. in Poetics at S.U.N.Y.-Buffalo.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 66 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-191-7

$16

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The Color Symphonies by Wade Stevenson reviewed by Midwest Book Review!

 
The Color Symphonies

Wade Stevenson
Blazevox Books
9781609641757      $16
www.blazevox.org 
 
Books on synesthesia are typically nonfiction accounts of the ability to 'feel colors'; but to have a literary, poetic work packed with descriptions integrating colors with characters and life is truly a horse of another color. Perhaps equating The Color Syphonies with Proust's flavorful writings would come closest; but even then, Proust is relatively inaccessible to all but the most literary follower - and The Color Symphonies is eminently accessible.
 
Like a delicious ice cream, bits of color flake off in the mouth and leave pleasing impressions with every bite: "In the playful day/jets of light were launched,/the white spaces shuddered,/there was dazzling cobalt blue/fused with windblown yellow./You begin to hear colors/you never thought would speak."
 
Biographical accounts have attempted to explain the perceptions and sensations of synesthesia; but few have truly succeeded… until now, it seemed one must be one of those rare individuals to 'feel color' or even understand descriptions of such a feeling.
 
The poems in The Color Symphonies are like a blind man learning to see for the first time: they bring with them an extra dimension of perception and, for just a moment, take readers along on the journey that is synesthesia: a heightened sense of color perception that integrates color with sound and movement to create a symphony of extrasensory impressions.
 
Wade Stevenson's words are delicately wrought and deftly capture the flavors and sensations of all kinds of light - even that which lies between in the realm of neither darkness or light: "It's not darkness or light,/it's not grey either,/doesn't come close to being/any known form of blue/It lies above the garden and the chairs,/unlike a fog it doesn't obscure/objects or dissolve them from sight"
 
It's rare that a poetic work can be recommended for that fellow artist, the painter or capturer of colors. Usually wordsmiths and painters are separate creatures, each striving to capture the color-haunted world in a different manner, with different tools.
 
Here the synthesis comes together - once more, a symphony of color - and invites the fellow artist working in another medium to come on in, sit down, and partake.
 
The language of colors, their interactions, and their presentation all come to life in a collection where colors are the main characters, assuming the vibrant words of a canvas and interacting with calls and responses in the world that contains them, keeps them from spilling, merges and dissolves them, and simply dances.
 
A good poetry collection describes. A better poetry collection captures. But a superior work absorbs, dissolves, recreates, immerses, and then dances … such is The Color Symphonies. There's simply quite nothing like its animated free verse and light-filled perspective, even in today's overloaded poetry genre.
 
D. Donovan, e-book reviewer for Midwest Book Review

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Reflections of Hostile Revelries by Jennifer C. Wolfe Reviewed in Midwestern Book Review

 
The Poetry Shelf
 
Reflections of Hostile Revelries
Jennifer C. Wolfe
BlazeVox
131 Euclid Avenue, Kenmore, NY 14217
9781609641528, $16.00, 108pp, 
 
Synopsis: Jennifer C. Wolfe's "Reflections of Hostile Revelries" is a compendium of politically oriented poetry focused on the hypocrisies and naivety, aspirations and personalities of the American political landscape. Deftly encapsulated into word fashioned pictures of life and politics both before and after the 2012 election of America's first African American president, as well as snapshot responses in verse to extraordinary political events ranging from the shooting of Travon Martin to the conflict raging in Syria, "Reflections of Hostile Revelries" is a truly seminal volume reflecting the politics of poetry -- and the poetry of politics.
 
Criteria: Jennifer C. Wolfe is an exceptionally talented wordsmith whose poetry lingers in the mind long after "Reflections of Hostile Revelries" has been set back on the shelf. 'Candy Slogans': Ah, that colorful Texas Govenor, Rick Perry: // He, who is so enamored of invoking his state's unique succession clause, / Threatening to secede from the Union, whenever he becomes outraged, / Or throws a childish political tantrum. // A prestigious candy company had a hit advertising slogan for two / Of their select candy bars, which i think summarizes Mr. perry quite well / "Sometimes You Feel Like A Nut" (Texas); "Sometimes You Don't" (Rest of the US).

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A Pretty Place to Mourn by Jan LaPerle Now Available!

  "In Jan LaPerle's heartbreaking new collection, the poems break apart within themselves, full of fear, need, and mercurial beauty. They shine like wounds you don't want to touch, but do – a close-up examination of what comes from within us. But there's mystery here too. And play. And wonder. A narrative about the women inside of us who we both love and are terrified to be."

—Erin Elizabeth Smith, author of The Naming of Strays


Jan LaPerle’s A Pretty Place to Mourn is “filled with knowing”—a dark, fearful, loving, motherly knowing about the unsafe worlds we all inhabit. So much falls, disappears, washes ashore; so much is “eaten from the inside out” or swallowed up in the earth. Her poems seek a safe ground that holds us all up, binding us to one another, even as we “stand in the middle of this loss.” Will our circle be unbroken? For the time being, let's comfort ourselves with listening to LaPerle's “generous love for others” singing on our behalf.

—Jeff Hardin, author of Fall Sanctuary and Notes for a Praise Book

 
 
 
 

Jan LaPerle lives in east Tennessee with her husband, Clay Matthews, and her daughter, Winnie. She teaches at Tennessee’s oldest college, Tusculum College. She has published a book of poetry, It Would Be Quiet (Prime Mincer Press, 2013), and an e-chap of flash fiction, Hush (Sundress Publications 2012), and several other stories and poems. She recently won an individual artist grant from the Tennessee Arts Commission.

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Book Information:

· Paperback: 68 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-185-6

$16

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Pam Brown reviews Flux and Wild Black Lake by Jane Joritz-Nakagawa

 

Pam Brown reviews Flux and Wild Black Lake by Jane Joritz-Nakagawa in Plumwood Mountain 

Jane Joritz-Nakagawa, Flux. New York: BlazeVOX books, 2013. http://www.blazevox.org/. ISBN 978 1 60964 155 9

Jane Joritz-Nakagawa, Wild Black Lake. Arroyo Grand, CA: Hank’s Original Loose Gravel Press, 2014.

theenkBooks@rochester.rr.com

 

Pam Brown

 

In Flux, Jane Joritz-Nakagawa plunges straight in to a dense monologue prompted by the absence of various postcards that are lost, never written, never sent, forgotten, refused by a post office because of profanity, illegibly addressed and even a postcard swept away in a typhoon. The typhoon sets the scene. The location is Japan – where Jane lives. It’s summer – after the “Hello Kitty alarm clock” interrupts sleep and is instantly hurled across the room still shrieking its alarm in Japanese – “mada da neOKITE! – still asleep? GET UP!’” … “somehow I manage to unstick myself from the crinkled bed sheets and stumble outside to the nearest sushi restaurant, where, being a vegan of course, I peel from the rice and then hurl the fishy parts until they stick to the restaurant conveyor belt. It’s so hot I assume I’ll be forgiven for this impropriety (and all the others) yet here come two unarmed guards wearing bright pink lipstick tight white skirts gloves and white hats, to carry me back to the oppressively humid street while I scream no, no, please, I am a political refugee from the violent country that dropped atomic bombs on you twice, the land of Rodney King, gang rape and Trayvon Martin”. She imagines prison life as time filled by a combination of reciting the complete works of Basho (though she can remember only one short poem) and listening to Morrissey. At the end of this anxious dream she cannot get up – not even to retrieve a possible missing postcard from the red letterbox. The reader knows the poet is in a predicament and surmises that she is going to try to write her way out of it.

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