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Letters from Limbo
Jeanne Marie Beaumont




Cavankerry
2016 • 108 pp. 6 x 9 1/4"
Poetry / Poetry - Family

$16.00 Paperback, 978-1-933880-59-4



“In Beaumont’s new book, Letters from Limbo, voices of the dead reach the living through various means, including the titular letters, revealing experiences harrowing and... [continued in Reviews below]”—Carol Moldaw,

Links the living with the dead through mysterious letters, historic documents, artifacts, haunting encounters, imaginative bravado

In Letters from Limbo, voices of the dead reach the living through various means, including the titular letters, revealing experiences harrowing and mysterious, and exploring limbo as an abode of souls as well as a state of entrapment and intermediacy. Fluent in many modes—lyric to documentary—the poet commands varied poetic forms. That we dwell in metaphorical limbos by virtue of our unpredictable earthly sojourn is a haunting truth this book both illuminates and celebrates.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“In Beaumont’s new book, Letters from Limbo, voices of the dead reach the living through various means, including the titular letters, revealing experiences harrowing and mysterious. Fluent in many modes, the poet commands varied poetic forms both illuminating and celebrating the haunting truth of our unpredictable earthly sojourn as we dwell in metaphorical limbo.

Adept at teasing out every implication of a word, through ekphrastics, epistolary poems, and lyric, she explores limbo both as a place of afterlife and a state of internal confinement and stasis, “borderlines within which change can occur.” In “Asylum Song,” the book’s middle section, Beaumont excavates as delicately and patiently as an archaeologist the hidden history of her immigrant grandmother who died after three weeks in a state asylum. Throughout, Beaumont’s poems glow with her metaphors’ intelligence, precision, and complexity.”—Carol Moldaw


“These lucent poems refract our experience as they meditate on a created world, the speaking dead more vibrant, more eloquent for their liminal state. Beaumont has created a universe all her own whose speaking is a unique idiom—timeless and moving and unerringly memorable.”
—Peter Cooley

From the Book:

We call this wind-shifting time, when the fires
from the land beyond our border conspire
with unfavorable currents to turn up our heat.
The ground's grown sere and bumpy, yet
we stumble much across it, our waders abandoned.
Each soul quivers, makes its own mirage pool on
the parched road. This is no punishment, no more
excruciating than the aeons or hours on hold here.

In fact, a sort of tropical languor ensues.
I can't escape the something-I-forgot-to-do
sense, that what that slinks over the mind's
ledge, sinks out of reach. Water fount? Inscribe
belief? While we don't covet our infernal neighbor's
sulfurous stench, against which our olfactories
have been granted sturdy shields, we envy,
in this sultry season, their plethora of shades.



Author Photo

JEANNE MARIE BEAUMONT grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs. She is the author of three previous collections of poetry: Burning of the Three Fires, Curious Conduct, and Placebo Effects, a winner in the National Poetry Series. She has taught at The Frost Place, Rutgers University, The Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y, and is on the poetry faculty of the Stonecoast MFA Program in Maine. Since 1983, she has made her home in Manhattan.



Sat, 2 Dec 2017 12:18:45 -0500