Exceeds Us

Exceeds Us

by Leah Poole Osowski
Exceeds Us

Exceeds Us

by Leah Poole Osowski


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Taking its name from a line in Rilke’s second Duino Elegy, “For our own heart always exceeds us,” at its core this is a book about new love and underlying illness. A lyric pursuit of our existence among the natural world, these poems keep in mind that existence is transient. They straddle reality lines, often stepping over into dream spaces or pushing against a linear world. But they are solidly of this world, its ground and various bodies of water, where a boy can become a field and a girl can drown in the rivers of her own body. At once intimate— “I would know you in someone else’s life, someone else’s storm cellar” — and expansive— “We rape the landscape/ we can see, start with what covers the light” — Osowski is a poet of language, of notice, and of inquiry. Rilke writes, “Wasn't love and departure placed so gently on shoulders that it seemed to be made of a different substance than in our world?” Exceeds Us is interested in that substance and the notion that our lives are not singular. These poems exceed the pair at their center, they exceed the one life we’ re granted, and they are not bound to the laws of our earth. “Prove how weather is not a god and I'll believe in you the rest of my life.”

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781947817548
Publisher: Saturnalia Books
Publication date: 03/15/2023
Pages: 88
Sales rank: 948,163
Product dimensions: 6.25(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.20(d)

About the Author

Leah Poole Osowski received Saturnalia’s Alma Book Award and is the author of hover over her (Kent State University Press, 2016), which won the Wick Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared in The Southern Review, The Georgia Review, Ninth Letter, ZYZZYVA, and elsewhere. She earned an MFA from the University of North Carolina Wilmington and was the emerging writer in residence at Penn State Altoona. She is the poetry editor of Raleigh Review and lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, the writer John McShea.
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