P R E S S
H E R M E N E U T I C C H A O S
Cover Art: Patricia Ariel
Publication date : December 2016
Pages : 26
Hand sewn, open edition
By Sarah Nichols
She May Be A Saint
Sarah Nichols' She May Be A Saint is home to centos that delve unflinchingly into the deep dark poetic motions in the works of Sylvia Plath and C.D. Wright. The narratives, constructed from the fragments of work of these two poets, make and unmake, hope and terrify, know and elude, flesh and slip, bruise and shine. This is a collection that sings to the forest floor lit by starlight and testifies how language is more intense and whole when it begins to map the echoes.
In She May Be a Saint, Sarah Nichols merges the words of Sylvia Plath and C.D. Wright to create a haunting text. These poems reside in “a disturbance of / emptiness” and “a landscape of / gas and shadows,” narrating a story of the spirit where the speaker has been “wounded / into dormancy.” Darkness abounds in the world that Nichols creates; here, “the dark of the / body/ is in // bloom.” Nichols is a master of the found poem: even as these poems echo with familiarity, they resound with the voice of a poet who creates new meaning from the texts we know.
-Julie Brooks Barbour, author of Haunted City and Beautifully Whole
Sarah Nichols’ poetry volume She May Be a Saint offers a disquiet prison of mind, body, identity. There is prodding; we are poked into the narrator’s past, both pain and desire, and sure violation in a “fictitious life” learned “under / [her] Mother’s / heart.” Identity, maiden-hood & blood permeate these “notes” of music left on dashboard in a car parked in Ypsilanti in snow. The poet longs an undifferentiated darkness; shadows abound, and an odd ghost-sense of someone else’s South lingers where struggle and healing play the late station on “a frequency” so “cold” it stands likely to be re-programmed.
Some nights I sleep with my dress on. It
darkens and tarnishes;
I married in it.
The body does not
come into it at all.
The body is a suspect. It cannot afford
disguise its cries
Sarah Nichols lives and writes in Connecticut. She is a co-editor of Thank You for Swallowing, an online journal of feminist protest poetry. She is also the author of four chapbooks, including Dreamland for Keeps (ELJ Publications, forthcoming, 2018), and Edie (Whispering): Poems from Grey Gardens (Dancing Girl Press, 2015). Her work has also appeared in Yellow Chair Review, Rogue Agent, and Noble/Gas Qtrly. She was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015.
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