Another assigned reading! It’s a collection of poetry, and it’s another stunning work. Thus far I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve been assigned.
The poems in this volume address a wide variety of subjects ranging from pregnancy, movement, loss and tragedy to love and joy. They were written over the course of what seemed like several years (some address events in 2005 and 2011 just to name a few). It reads as a carefully curated selection of what must be Young’s very best works.
Her experiences undoubtedly influenced her writing – many of them are the subjects of a poem or several poems in the collection. She experiences Katrina and Egypt during the Revolution among other things.
She uses quite a few forms; the aubade, the villanelle, the triptych, and the elegy to name a few.
A few of my favorites from the collection are “Sower,” “Fine-Toothed,” “Meet Me in Morocco,” “Overdue,” “Private S. in the Baghdad Zoo,” “Aubade in Cairo,” “Postnatal,” and “Voyeur.” I also loved “As You Sleep, the Dead Multiply,” “Egyptian Spring,” and “”Fire on the Prophet’s Face,” the last three poems in the collection. There wasn’t a poem in this book that didn’t deserve its space on the page.
Young’s writing is incredible – each poem is comprised of strong lines packed with imagery and sensory details that bring the reader into her world. She’s one of the strongest poets I’ve read this year.
I give this book a 9/10.