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A Conjoined Book
Aftermath and Become Tree, Become Bird
Karla Kelsey




Omnidawn
2014 • 104 pp. 6 x 9"
Poetry / Poetry - American / Poetry - Women Authors

$17.95 Paperback, 978-1-890650-94-0



“It’d be easy to recommend Karla Kelsey’s third book, A Conjoined Book, simply by cataloguing its instances of stunning depiction: 'trumpet vine to maple branch... [continued in Reviews below]”—Zach Savich, Black Ocean

A double book that echoes with the ecological and social crises of our times, this lyric meditation is interrogation and intervention, defying the limitations we place on story’s potency and potential

Karla Kelsey’s A Conjoined Book hinges together two texts—Aftermath and Become Tree, Become Bird—to create a meditation on the nature of aboutness. Aftermath unfolds after an unnamed ecological/emotional fracture, creating a landscape of rift where the “I” imagines herself as “she,” and perceptions weave into memory and fiction. Become Tree, Become Bird grafts the Brothers Grimm’s The Juniper Tree to the body of Aftermath, reworking what has splintered into a variation of fairy tale. Throughout A Conjoined Book, Kelsey’s condensed imagery, shifting viewpoints, and interwoven formal structures set lyric and narrative a-shimmer.

Blending experiment and tradition, this book will appeal to a wide audience interested in seeing how fairy tale, philosophy, ecology, narratology, history. As Julie Carr writes: “horror, elegy, mystery, fairy tale, lyric, treatise, fragment meet one another with all their intensities of emotion and intellect.”

Reviews / Endorsements

"It’d be easy to recommend Karla Kelsey’s third book, A Conjoined Book, simply by cataloguing its instances of stunning depiction: 'trumpet vine to maple branch lashed,' starts the first of the sequences titled 'Interstitial Weather Remnant,' and one feels the incisive surge and swoosh flourishing in seams. Through such burling transport, Kelsey offers 'a form of looking // into the present state of attrition // eliciting truth.'” —Zach Savich, Black Ocean

“This conjoined book—these coordinating clauses—maps in structure and theme the essentially gothic architecture of affect.”—Christian Hawkey, VENTRAKL

“Works of this much intelligence, this much care, this much affective presence are rare. I’ve never read anything like it and it’s changed me.” —Julie Carr, RAG



KARLA KELSEY’s Knowledge, Forms, the Aviary, selected by Carolyn Forché for Ahsahta Press Sawtooth Poetry Prize. Iteration Nets was published by Ahsahta. Editor/writer for Constant Critic, co-directs SplitLevel Texts. Graduate of UCLA, Iowa Writer’s Workshop, & University of Denver. Recipient of a Fulbright lectureship, she’s taught at Eötvös Loránd University and Eötvös Collegium, in Budapest. Specializes in poetry at Susquehanna University, Pennsylvania.



Wed, 18 Oct 2017 13:30:02 -0500