“THE LONELIEST WHALE BLUES sings a spiraling, haunting song of both the perdurability and fragility of historical, biological, and geological cycles with a poetic voice that is by turns tender, whimsical, and urgent. In traditional Japanese haibun alternating with graceful lyrics, Suzuki-Martinez follows the movement of insects, birds, weather, and oceans with a curious and watchful eye. These compelling poems track the histories of racism and internment, and serve as harbingers for the unfolding climate crisis. This is a book that celebrates monsters as sacred messengers. This is a book that calls forth the fierce molten lions burning within shy rabbits. This is a book that channels a matrilineage in which 'everyone knows / the gods speak only to women.'” —Lee Ann Roripaugh
"Moving from Hawai'i, to Japan, to Arizona, her poems are both world-weary and enthralled by the world. She doesn’t juxtapose the beautiful and the monstrous—she constellates both into language that’s elegiac and ecstatic. Suzuki-Martinez has written a beautifully connective and consciousness-raising book." — Eduardo Corral
Poetry. Asian & Asian American Studies. Environmental Studies. Women’s Studies.
Sharon Suzuki-Martinez is a poet and essayist. Her first book, THE WAY OF ALL FLUX (New Rivers Press, 2012), won the MVP Prize. She has a micro-chapbook, A Glimpse of Birds over O'odham Land (Rinky Dink Press, 2021). Suzuki-Martinez is a Kundiman fellow, a Pushcart nominee, and a Best of the Net finalist. She grew up in Kāne'ohe, Hawai'i, and now lives with her husband David in Tempe, Arizona, on the ancestral homeland of the Akimel O'odham.