Poetry. California Interest. POMEGRANATE-EATER's "radiant host" lives where fecundity meets decay, where the orderly Victorian garden explodes in wild tendrils. The "feast of ingathering" Borsuk spreads before the reader is a harvest at once decadent and cannibalistic: the fruit "explodes overripe, then rots" in our mouths. These rich and densely-layered confections invite us to devour self after self as the text's shifting speaker builds and rebuilds an identity in language. Through prose poems interrogating the self in the guise of various fruit, epistles obliquely addressing a shadow lover, and dense lexical tapestries whose words seem to point only away from meaning and toward one another, Borsuk lets language speak, directing our gaze at its shimmering surfaces. This book of metamorphoses delights in puns, anagrams, etymologies, and homologies that freight each line with a surfeit of sound and sense. As the "I" of the book slips from speaker to speaker, "shifts a hip," and draws attention to itself, it also acknowledges its failure to "speak plain." Rather than attempting to cohere, Borsuk's speakers acknowledge their own failings, their shame, and their need for a "thicker skin." When identity arises in relation to others, how does one become self-possessed? these poems ask. And should one?
Amaranth Borsuk's most recent books are POMEGRANATE EATER (Kore Press, 2016), BETWEEN PAGE AND SCREEN (SpringGun Press, 2016), with Brad Bouse, and AS WE KNOW (Subito Press, 2014), a collaboration with Andy Fitch. She is the author of HANDIWORK (Slope Editions, 2012). ABRA, a collaboration with Kate Durbin forthcoming from 1913 Press, recently received an NEA-sponsored Expanded Artists' Books grant from the Center for Book and Paper Arts at Columbia College Chicago and will be issued as an artist's book with an iPad app created by Ian Hatcher this year. Amaranth is an Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at the University of Washington, Bothell, where she also teaches in the MFA in Creative Writing and Poetics.Author City: SEATTLE, WA USA