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Church of Needles
     

Church of Needles

by Sarah Sousa
 

Poetry. CHURCH OF NEEDLES dwells in the tension between our desire for autonomy and our need for connection; with each other, with our own mercurial selves, with god. If the poems circle a place of alienation, where even the landscape appears aloof if not hostile, where the bond between a mother and her newborn isn't a given, they often arrive at redemption, but a

Overview


Poetry. CHURCH OF NEEDLES dwells in the tension between our desire for autonomy and our need for connection; with each other, with our own mercurial selves, with god. If the poems circle a place of alienation, where even the landscape appears aloof if not hostile, where the bond between a mother and her newborn isn't a given, they often arrive at redemption, but a curiously godless one. Threaded through poems of darkness, of abuse, betrayal, witness and hardship, god is merciless when present, but more often obstinately absent. The voices of a ridiculed small town giantess, the abused wife of a Civil War veteran and a former slave making her way in the north dialogue with contemporary voices telling their own stories of suffering. Loneliness, like an Andrew Wyeth landscape, is the familiar ground on which these characters have built their lives, not counting on but surprised by unexpected grace.

"Perhaps the secret to adult prayer has been this: the more concrete its particularities, the greater possibility of its actually being heard. If there is such thing as secular prayer, prayers that have accrued weight by welcoming worldly shadows both personal and collective, chewing on them, digesting them, before integrating them into our conscious existence, then that is what Sarah Sousa has accomplished here, sinking deep into the muck to work a spiritual aesthetic of a very high order."—Timothy Liu

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780985503178
Publisher:
Red Mountain Press
Publication date:
05/30/2014
Pages:
82
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.30(d)

Meet the Author


Sarah Sousa received the 2013 Red Mountain Poetry Prize for CHURCH OF NEEDLES (Red Mountain Press, 2014). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Apalachee Review, Barn Owl Review, Spoon River Poetry Review, The Best of Kore Press 2012 Poetry, Tupelo Quarterly and Water-Stone Review, among others. She is the recipient of a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Prize and has been nominated for a Pushcart. She holds an MFA from Bennington College and lives in Western Massachusetts with her husband, the musician Ray LaMontagne, and their two sons.

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