Mary Meriam is a rare and original poet. This is a dazzling book, a fusion of anguish and wit and song, written in clear and compelling language. I love the wildness, the inventiveness, the always surprising but accurate metaphors. She writes of real things, real people, always musically. She uses Mother Goose rhythms and rhymes or echoes of Sapphic meters or settings as grim as any of the Grimm Brothers' tales, to tell searing truths that move, frighten, and delight one with the skill of their telling. - Naomi Replansky, Author of The Dangerous World and Collected Poems Mary Meriam is a frightening poet, a frighteningly good poet. The intensity of her writing will frighten you, but also her technical skill. She can put a chill into the most common rhyme. The poems speak like qa gust of gorgeous / thundering swallows.q She identifies her models as Christina Rossetti and Charlotte Mew, whose Goblin Market and qFarmer's Brideq rightfully haunt the collection. But her real soulmate is Thomas Lovell Beddoes, the ultimate poet of the queer and scary whose masterpiece, Death's Jest Book, was left appropriately unfinished. She may ask us to qunspookq her dreams, but we won't succeed. The uncanny is too engrained in her sensibility. All we can ask is that she continue to keep writing. - David Bergman, Poetry Editor of The Gay a Lesbian Review Mary Meriam is an accomplished technician and imaginative Mother Goose artist, who like Mother Goose (my favorite collection in the world), is almost always serious, even tragic, along with fun. I am floored by poems with lines like the opening of qI Learn Today My Mother Liedq: qNot one drop of Jewish blood / in me or you!q my mother cried, / as if she had a drop to hide... We are lucky to have her dissident voice. - Willis Barnstone, American Poet Mary Meriam's new collection is a treasure chest of charm and trouble. Her sonnets, lyrics and chants show the best of the New Formalism, being personal but not ever inaccessibly private, and musical without a touch of pretense. There is life and sweetness in her approach, and reproach and rue as well. - Zachary Bos, Editor of Poetry Northeast Mary Meriam is a poet who takes risks, by which I don't mean what you think I mean. There's nothing risky about breaking rules that haven't been in effect since 1880. I'm talking about the modern rules, the new respectability, the advice given in poetry workshops by legions of successful poets whom no one reads. Mary doesn't give a shit about Pound's qdon'ts, q she's too busy writing fierce, gorgeous poems about love and pain. She's a true rebel, in all her heartfelt, singsong, vulnerable, girly glory. - Rose Kelleher, Anthony Hecht Prize for Bundle o' Tinder This is my kind of a poet. 'She speaks, ' as Larkin said of the beautiful and wistful and utterly different Stevie Smith, 'with the authority of sadness.' She also speaks in the language of tradition. She uses old forms fiercely. She is rather a fierce poet. Oh, and a Lesbian. You can't ignore that. But what does she do? Do with words. Magic. Above all, Mary Meriam is a magic poet and if that is what you want (as I do) this is a book for you. - John Whitworth, British Poet* Nominated for the Poetsa#39; Prize Mary Meriam is a rare and original poet. This is a dazzling book, a fusion of anguish and wit and song, written in clear and compelling language.
|Title||:||Conjuring My Leafy Muse|