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Woman Without Umbrella
Victoria Redel

Four Way
2012 • 84 pp. 6 x 9"

$15.95 Paperback, 978-1-935536-24-6

“Winning and elegant at its best, unified and honest throughout, this third collection from Redel (Swoon) follows the poet and a brace of her characters... [continued in Reviews below]”—Publishers Weekly

From the author of the novel-turned-film Lover Boy with Kyra Sedgwick, this long-awaited third poetry collection celebrates love and a life deeply lived

With a voice that is rooted in the lush, immediate present, Victoria Redel explores the necessity to live and love deeply in her third collection of poems, Woman Without Umbrella. With her fearless and insistent engagement with language, Redel leads us, unprotected and exposed to the elements, through landscapes urban and domestic, contemplative and erotic, as she navigates the self and the world, from love to disaster to “a calm easy everyday” and back to love again.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“Winning and elegant at its best, unified and honest throughout, this third collection from Redel (Swoon) follows the poet and a brace of her characters through romantic and familial episodes, from youth to late middle age, from moments when everything seems new to “babies grown, gone from home,” “death/ of an old school friend.” A beautifully unguarded poem entitled “Today, We’re This World’s Darling” concludes by praising (without divulging) “Those gorgeous, scandalous/ tender words you say to me each morning.” Redel is also a novelist, and often her poems (most no more than a page) try to reconcile the impulse to tell stories with the lyric drive to refine and strip down: her language may not sparkle on its own, but situations give it life. Some of her best works are prose poems. In one, a grandfather shoots a favorite donkey out of spite; in another, girls make prank distress calls from a pay phone, ‘dialing up another random number to make them listen to us again.’”—Publishers Weekly

“Poet and novelist Redel plays evocatively with narrative expectations in her third poetry collection...Middle-aged speakers abound in this collection, contemplative and rueful but also hopeful. ‘Easy Living,’ one of the collection’s most resonant poems, pays homage to a recently deceased friend who approached dying by delighting in everyday encounters. Redel’s speakers are edging toward 50 and beyond, but they discuss courtship and eros with an amazed, almost innocent tone. Kissing occurs frequently, its lyrical descriptions lingering metaphorically for the reader. While some of the poems insist too much on allegory, the majority skillfully and merrily summon life from even the most desiccated matter. In ‘The End,’ a divorcing couple lies in bed and reviews their marriage through a dazzling parade of personifications.”—Publishers Weekly

Redel's luminous ‘postcards to the future’ render our predicament radically legible, to be survived with whatever courage we can summon.”—Carolyn Forché

“So possessed are we by her radiant wisdom…” —Major Jackson

VICTORIA REDEL is the author of two previous books of poetry and three books of fiction. She teaches at Sarah Lawrence College.

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 14:15:33 -0500