Award-winning poet Lauren Camp’s sixth collection of poetry.
With the gifts of a visual artist and poet’s attention, AN EYE IN EACH SQUARE confronts our era’s barbed and shifting networks of power and atrocities. Lauren Camp’s sixth collection of poetry offers social critique within an imaginative biography of enigmatic painter Agnes Martin and a treatise on the multiplicities of the natural world. Rendering its landscape in precise imagery and lyrical language, AN EYE IN EACH SQUARE asks the reader to hold the conscience of the world and also to claim what we might need most—the risky and urgent space of comfort found within the artist’s line.
Poetry. Art. Nature. Women's Studies.
“The paintings and mind of artist Agnes Martin echo through the very structure of these poems. In fact, Martin is the book’s structure. She is a form like a sonnet is a form. ... Ekphrasis is no contrivance. It is a cosmology. These poems are ‘slow and persuasive.’ They move like the sea, mirror the stillness of the sky, mapping and refining a deep interiority. Agnes Martin’s visual work is composed of verticals and horizontals, and Camp finds their parallel in poetry’s unit of measure, the line, a line that is a question providing its own answer.” —Diane Seuss
“These poems shine with the crystalline austerity of an Agnes Martin painting, sparkling with precise imagery, crisp word choices, and surprising swerves of syntax. The whole braids personal exploration with a deep appreciation, not only of Martin’s work, but also of her unusual participation in the land around her. These poems, similarly, become a part of the landscape in an alchemical feat that brings the reader into its very heart.”—Cole Swenson
“In AN EYE IN EACH SQUARE, Lauren Camp explores the boundary between seeing the world and watching the seeing of the world by somebody else—in this case, the artist Agnes Martin. It’s difficult to capture making in a medium different from the medium in which the making is happening, but Camp translates the feeling of looking into words and accomplishes thereby a rare thing: She writes poems as full as the things about which she is writing.”—Shane McCrae
Rebecca Morgan Frank @ Literary HubAuthor Website
Lauren Camp is the Poet Laureate of New Mexico and author of five books, most recently TOOK HOUSE (Tupelo Press, 2020). Two new books-AN EYE IN EACH SQUARE (River River Books, 2023) and WORN SMOOTH BETWEEN DEVOURINGS (NYQ Books) -are forthcoming in 2023. Honors include a Dorset Prize and finalist citations for the Arab American Book Award and Adrienne Rich Award for Poetry. Her poems have appeared in Kenyon Review, Prairie Schooner, Witness, The Common, and Poet Lore, and her work has been translated into Mandarin, Turkish, Spanish, and Arabic. Her work has received support from Black Earth Institute, Storyknife Writers Retreat, Denver Botanic Gardens, and the Taft-Nicholson Center. In 2018, she was a visiting scholar/poet at the Mayo Clinic, sharing poems of dementia with physicians and research scientists, and she was Astronomer in Residence at Grand Canyon National Park in 2022.