Pub. Date:



Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for delivery by Friday, September 24


Praise for BIRD LIGHT

“Here is an exquisite collection of lyrical and imagistic poems firmly rooted in the natural world. But Elizabeth Cohen’s poems are also rooted in the human, referring in an oblique way to loss and sorrow, joy and love. This is truly a beautiful book about survival and the way the natural world helps to heal us.” ~ Maria Mazziotti Gillan American Book Award Winner

“One of the few things as great as watching birds is watching birds through the eyes of a masterful poet. Elizabeth Cohen is just that—her craft so fine and so smooth that I read one of the poems twice before realizing it was a villanelle. Combine this meticulous, honed craft with the abandon and whimsy of a keen, playful intellect, and you have verse that sings and dips and soars as gracefully and naturally as a bird in flight. Bird Light is a book that “licks the air,” “flings, madly, like a shot punctuation mark,” and ‘leaps branches and telephone wires to ride the air to an invisible height.’ Here is a poetic and avian treasure.” ~ Melissa Studdard, author of I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast and Six Weeks to Yehidah

Bird Light is a bird phenomenology. Birds are embodiments of time or disembodiments of time. They are characters that are funny and annoying, loyal and everything beautiful, charming and irresistible, sad and even scary. They are surprising joy, new life, and they disappear into another world as our beloved dead do. Elizabeth Cohen’s poetry is a phenomenon, a witty consciousness, all that birds are and all that they carry us beyond.” ~ Aliki Barnstone, Poet Laureate of Missouri, author of Blue Earth, Wild With It and Dwelling

“These poems fluidly move between memory and a present experience of time, place, love, loss, and death while gently reminding readers that sophisticated treatment of these large ideas is a treasure to be sought, a pleasure that Cohen seeks and shares with us. Here are poems full of grace and quiet power.” ~ Catherine Daly, author of Locket and To Delete and Instruct

“Elizabeth Cohen’s Bird Light is a wonder and a delight, a kind of autobiography in birds, filled with exuberance and driven by an intimate, passionate, quirky engagement with the world.” ~ Cecilia Woloch, NEA Fellow and author of Carpathia, Late, Sacrifice, Earth and other works

“Elizabeth Cohen reminds me of Anne Porter, Jimmy Schuyler, Joe Stroud, Gary Snyder, and Mary Oliver (a mighty visionary company, I think). She knows not only the names of living things; she knows what it means to live. A poetic field-guide to the poet’s world, Bird Light is a book whose whole keeps the reader “in the middle of beautiful/in the middle of glorious.”” ~ Mark Statman, author of A Map of the Winds , That Train Again, and other works


Related collections and offers

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780996523196
Publisher: Saint Julian Press, Inc.
Publication date: 10/14/2016
Pages: 116
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.28(d)

About the Author

Elizabeth Cohen holds an MFA from Columbia University and is an English professor at SUNY/Plattsburgh State University, where she teaches Creative Writing (Poetry), Autobiographical Writing (Memoir) and serves as a co-editor of the Saranac Review. She is the author of four previous books and chapbooks of poetry, a book of short stories, The Hypothetical Girl, and a memoir, The Family on Beartown Road, among other books. Her poems, articles, stories, and essays have appeared in Northwest Review, Exquisite Corpse, Ellipses, Yale Review, SELF, MORE, Newsweek, People, Rolling Stone, The New York Times Magazine, Tablet, and other publications.
To learn more, please go to

Aliki Barnstone is a poet, translator, critic, editor, and visual artist. Her visual art has appeared in New Letters and Tiferet. She is the author of eight books of poetry, most recently, Dwelling (Sheep Meadow, 2016), Bright Body (White Pine, 2011) and Dear God Dear, Dr. Heartbreak: New and Selected Poems (Sheep Meadow, 2009), and the translator ofThe Collected Poems of C.P. Cavafy: A New Translation (W.W. Norton, 2006). Her first book of poems, The Real Tin Flower (Crowell-Collier, 1968), was published when she was 12 years old, with a forward by Anne Sexton. In 2014, Carnegie- Mellon University Press reissued her book, Madly in Love, as a Carnegie-Mellon Classic Contemporary.

Her awards include a Senior Fulbright Fellowship in Greece, the Silver Pen Award from the Nevada Writers Hall of Fame, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Literature Fellowship in Poetry, and a residency at the Anderson Center at Tower View. She serves as Poet Laureate of Missouri and is Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Missouri.

To learn more, please go to


Port Crane, New York

Date of Birth:

June 13, 1959

Place of Birth:

Indianapolis, Indiana


B.A., University of New Mexico, 1983; M.A., Temple University, 1987; M.F.A., Columbia University, 1990

Customer Reviews