paperback, 80 pages, 5.5 x 8.25 "
Publication Date: 2016
An urgent and scintillating second collection by poet and activist Juliet Patterson
Part lamentation, part ode, Threnody (the word originates from the Greek, threnos, “wailing” and oide “ode.”), examines the beauty and violence of our present ecological moment with a lyric and meditative eye. Concerned with the precise relationship of components in the world these poems exist in the overlap between imagination and fact, truth and history, territory and map, the living and the dead.
In Juliet Patterson’s sure-footed aesthetic the intellectual, physical and spiritual are woven together—the result is a world saturated by the human mind, and a mind saturated by the world. These poems are driven by a passionate grief for how we have treated this world as a dispensable other when even the reverie of prairie depends on a real bee of the kind “whose life/ burst furious through fields” or “the shimmering plain/half in, half out of time,” “the world’s time/becoming completely destitute/time, but also perhaps not, not yet, /not even yet.” – Jane Mead
“As if composed by Psyche and Echo—in its pared-down, spiny, neologistic apprehension—when desire speaks, death responds. Forever. And then desire speaks again. Whether it's the innumerable deaths of soldiers, or the sudden, inexplicable deaths of whole colonies of bees, Juliet Patterson's marvelous, wrenching lamentation recalls the forlorn desire and hopefulness in Paul Celan's 'Threadsuns.' Terse, scary, heartfelt—such is this terrific book of poems.” – Ralph Angel