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Côte Blanche
Martha Serpas



First Book

New Issues Poetry & Prose
2002 • 70 pp. 6 x 8 1/2"
Poetry

$14.00 Paperback, 978-1-930974-17-3
$22.00 Hardcover, 978-1-930974-18-0



“Miracles happen at the water's edge - baptism, discipleship, a thirst for adventure, re-connection with ancient symbols of regeneration. In her collection titled Côte Blanche... [continued in Reviews below]”—Carole Timin, The Democrat

In this, her first book, Martha Serpas succeeds brilliantly in fulfilling the calculations of the alchemists, those great hermetic artists of medieval Europe. Côte Blanche deliberately and beautifully weds the secular to the divine in poems which, steeped in the Cajun landscape of Serpas’s Louisiana, prickle with exhilarating sensuality. Through its votive offerings to a God who is all too aware of the longings and aspirations of humankind, Côte Blanche becomes a testament to a new, personal belief that is simple yet breathtaking in its reach.

Reviews / Endorsements

“Miracles happen at the water's edge - baptism, discipleship, a thirst for adventure, re-connection with ancient symbols of regeneration. In her collection titled Côte Blanche, poet Martha Serpas . . . invites us to become immersed in landscapes along Louisiana's low bayou country where 'Côte Blanche' is the name given by French cajun settlers to the 'White Coast' salt islands and inlets that encroach upon towns like St. Charles Crossing, Grand Caillou, and Port Fourchon. With the sure skill of a child grown up by the sea, Serpas navigates back to this briny world of characters she casts as pilgrims of a 'roustabout God.' She is a word artist drawing the reader into vivid descriptions of tough working men, of wives who count rosaries 'before a dark space in the wall' and a chorus of familiar voices, living and dead, that speak their experience of 'time we saved, forgot, then lost.'”—Carole Timin, The Democrat

“Martha Serpas is, in a highly individual way, a Catholic devotional poet from Louisiana, and she has perfected this, her first book, across fifteen years. Many rereadings persuade me that a double handful of these poems may achieve permanence. Like Elizabeth Bishop, her strong precursor, Martha Serpas practices a severely chastened art of poetry . . . I am moved to prophesy a considerable poetic development for her.”—Harold Bloom



MARTHA SERPAS is a native of Galliano, Louisiana, and a graduate of Louisiana State University, New York University, Yale Divinity School, and the University of Houston. Her poems are included in Uncommonplace: An Anthology of Louisiana Poets (LSU Press). A frequent lecturer on poetry and belief, she teaches at the University of Tampa.



Wed, 18 Oct 2017 13:42:05 -0500