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UNRULY by Elysia Lucinda Smith Now Available!

  

UNRULY is a book of rude girl poems describing threesomes, freewheeling, Joan of Arc, naked mole rats, and other R rated things. It is also a book about overcoming an upbringing in the Bible Belt. All this converges in a spilling, like when you vomit into your purse in an Uber except in this book you're sober enough to be mad.

Also see in UNRULY: poems in conversation with original artwork by riot girls across the country.


Starting with its terrific title, UNRULY gives us fierce and funny images, invites the reader in for matter-of-fact lines like “maybe you’ve been taking it/up the ass this whole time,” “and/then we high-fived or made out;/I don’t remember,” making you part of a conversation you are thrilled to overhear, about “how being a woman/means sometimes being pressed//into corners or blindness/or laughter.” There’s a lot of laughter. And we need it. These poems remind us to “want as much/as possible,” “because I am again and again aroused/to be alive.”

—Jill McDonough


“Elysia Smith sits her younger self beneath a ghost light and pulls the most arcane questions out from her chest. She looks back on the origins of her own sexual identity, surfacing the candid ugliness that flickers in all instances of coming of age and sex itself. Gritty detail and exquisite retelling crash together to disrupt the orderliness of simplified femininity that comes from a small-town upbringing.”

—Laura Knicklebine of Maudlin House


Unruly is not only one of the liveliest and most inviting titles I know for a collection of poems, it’s also one of the most accurate. Elysia Smith’s poems are utterly uninhibited, whatever their subject—Joan of Arc, Calamity Jane, and especially sex. But you’d be dead wrong to miss the underlying artistry. These unruly poems are completely finished down to their consistently unforgettable—hilarious, beautiful, scary—last lines. To quote Smith herself, this book is “the real, hairy thing”!

—Lloyd Schwartz

 

Elysia Lucinda Smith has published a few odd chapbooks, out of print but free to you if you want one of the copies in her closet. The rest of her work can be found online at ElysiaLucinda.com. In her free time she is a mean waitress.


Book Information:

· Paperback: 100 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-276-1

$16

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Unruly by Elysia Lucinda Smith Book Preview 

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UNRULY by Elysia Lucinda Smith reviewed in Maudlin House

 

 

This is a confessional collection of prose. Elysia Smith sits her younger self beneath a ghost light and pulls the most arcane questions out from her chest. She looks back on the origins of her own sexual identity, surfacing the candid ugliness that flickers in all instances of coming of age and sex itself. Gritty detail and exquisite retelling crash together to disrupt the orderliness of simplified femininity that comes from a small-town upbringing. Unruly challenges the norm and celebrates what it means to be imperfectly female and naturally sexual.

The mechanics of adolescent girl and boy intimacy turn like broken gears when the discovery of sex begin to spread across the page. Each move is an awkward one. Each encounter leaves a spark of desire behind as she tries to find her footing and fit into her own skin comfortably.

This was the half life

Of teenage desire, the point in which 

I didn’t go down but let boys

Finger me, but never sex, not sex

By a degree of experimentation, Smith grips an understanding that most humans are naturally sexual beings. Although this is a grounding fact, her rooted definition of femininity becomes tenuous during the thick of her personally sobering, sometimes painful experiences. Smith puts a certain urgency into her prose. But simultaneously, she runs her hands over the gritty reality of sexual coming to.

I emerged in a foam

Of PBR, backlit by a Shell sign, lifting

The two slick bodies

With each squishing step, “I am

Sparkly with want, with what

Is to be, with what is” soaked

In the toxic brine of the White River

Pulling trash from my teeth

Read the whole review here 

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Extra Pages

Photos on flickr