The twentieth anniversary of 9/11 sees Andrea Carter Brown gathering her work into one devastating bouquet of terror, survival, grief, and recovery. From stark moment-to-moment narrative of the flight from her apartment one block from the Towers, through the poems of loss and recovery, her honesty refuses simple answers and refuses to prettify. Bracketed by poems that celebrate the beauty of New York and of the life that followed, Brown pulls us through the arteries of trauma to a wise and astonished consciousness of what it means to heal. To sing again.
"There are moments in time that pull into themselves all that has gone before, and settle like dust, or micro-organisms, upon and within all that follows after. In SEPTEMBER 12 we watch the process of innocence captured by absolutely unpredicted trauma, and how the experience lives on and on, through shock and terror, through the kindness of strangers, through the heart of a beloved, through grief and elegy, through normality that will never again be normal." —Alicia Ostriker
"A more haunting memorial to 9/11 than this book will be hard to find. Following a lyrical prelude that highlights the nearby Hudson River, the long prose poem of the title follows Andrea Carter Brown as she witnesses and flees from the Trade Center attacks just a block from her apartment. The generous use of descriptive and narrative detail that makes these poems so memorable carries into elegy and aftermath, and finally into a landscape filled, like the opening poems, with quiet beauty. Reading SEPTEMBER 12 is a wrenching but restorative experience you won’t soon forget." —Martha Collins
In 2001, Andrea Carter Brown lived near the Twin Towers, and but for her sister’s anxious call on 9/11, she might have died there. As she powerfully chronicles in SEPTEMBER 12 instead, she survived to tell the tale. An opening homage to the Hudson River School is entrancing. Then, BAM. Brown embarks on a harrowing narrative of life-altering survival, too shocked at first to feel but recording everything. This brave book documents great loss and trauma, but also hard-won psychic resilience in poems of astonishing beauty and wisdom. SEPTEMBER 12 is necessary poetry." —Cynthia Hogue
Andrea Carter Brown is the author of The Disheveled Bed, (CavanKerry Press, 2006) and two chapbooks, Domestic Karma, (Finishing Line Press, 2018) and Brook & Rainbow, (The Sow's Ear Poetry Review, 2001) winner of the 2001 Sow's Ear Press Chapbook Prize. Poems from SEPTEMBER 12 won the James Dickey Prize from Five Points, the River Styx International Poetry Prize, and the National Poet Hunt from The MacGuffin. They are cited in the Library of Congress Online Guide to the Poetry of 9/11 and have been featured at Split This Rock and on NPR. Formerly a Founding Editor of Barrow Street and Managing Editor of The Emily Dickinson Journal, she is currently Series Editor of The Word Works Washington Prize.