Denise Low, winner of the Red Mountain Editor's Prize, 2018
Life Inside the Body sings like the ship's guy-wires in its opening poem, "Harbor," of the body of life and life in the world. These poems are so inevitable that it seems they must have always existed, helping us better engage with the beating heart of whatever life brings. Altogether, Life Inside the Body embodies both the daily and the mythological dimensions of life, tilting our view of the stories we live so that we can better align those stories and experiences with our truths.
Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Kansas Poet Laureate Emerita and author of Miriam's Well
Susan Whitmore's poems remind us that great poetry rings spiritually and, at times, elegiacally, like her porch chimes through an open window. Loss, as it happens, leads this poet to enormous generosity and an expansive life, where a lion can become the image of love, tearing us open. "Cover your transgressor with kisses," she writes. The exuberance of these poems grows out of immediacy yoked to myth, classical and biblical. The poet's lived experience is as joyful as pasta carbonara in bed after the lights go out. The poems resound with determination in a world where nothing can be considered ordinary.
Robert Stewart, author of Working Class, poems; and editor of New Letters magazine