“The title of Tina Kelley's new book, Abloom and Awry, promises a richness of language within, witty, authentic, and profound. That promise is fulfilled on page after page. In addition... [continued in Reviews below]”—Pattiann Rogers, The Grand Array, Song of the World Becoming, Firekeeper,
With the eye of a journalist and the heart of a caretaker, Kelley shares her love of words, fireworks, kites, sea-salt caramels, metaphor, and humans. Armed with a generative impulse, her poems pay close attention to the dark, moving through it with wit and affirmation.
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Reviews / Endorsements
“The title of Tina Kelley's new book, Abloom and Awry, promises a richness of language within, witty, authentic, and profound. That promise is fulfilled on page after page. In addition to her acute attention to the earth and the interconnectedness of its life, Kelley brings her energy and originality to the world of parent and child, the body and wonder of the experience, the first child, the second. She presents the unrestrained curiosity and imagination of childhood in her own exquisite language without exaggeration or sentimentality. The tradition of English poetry is enriched by such a voice.”—Pattiann Rogers, The Grand Array, Song of the World Becoming, Firekeeper
“Tina Kelley is a good poet for the same reasons she was a good reporter—she asks good questions, she picks up vivid details. Above all, she pays attention. As a result, reading Kelley is like having an attention implant; edges are sharper, colors more vivid, meanings finer-honed. Since it's a fallen world, Kelley can skin you and salt you and nail you to the barn door when she imagines her way into the pain of others, whether as real as children in a shelter or as fictional as Peter Pan's abandoned mother Pamela. But praise is her first language, and praise is what these poems deserve.”—Susan Blackwell Ramsey, winner of the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry for A Mind Like This
From the Book:
The Music Garden, If I Built It
broad swath of field,
rye grass? wheat?
leading to ocean of large large lake,
lake with horizon as shore.
through a sweet curving tunnel,
poplar trees, or elms
touching tips overhead.
of old-fashioned things:
charm of the names of the crushes
of grade school,
a list each visitor
TINA KELLEY’s other poetry books are Precise and The Gospel of Galore, winner of a 2003 Washington State Book Award. Her writing has appeared in The Best American Poetry 2009, Audubon, the Journal of the American Medical Association, Orion, People, Poetry Northwest, Poetry East, Southwest Review, and Prairie Schooner, and on the buses of Seattle, Washington. Abloom & Awry’s title poem won the 2014 New Jersey Poets Prize. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and two children.