by Adrienne Su


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“Su negotiates the mercurial new world of cultural commingling in witty, formally assured poems—often in elegantly accomplished forms which themselves add to the layering of cultural reference."—Mark Doty

Written in the shadow of the devastating events of 9/11, these beautifully crafted narrative poems reveal heartfelt insights into the emotional life of a contemporary woman in her late thirties—balancing marriage, motherhood, and career—as well as contemplating her experience as the daughter of Chinese immigrants, for whom ambition is a lower priority than survival. While many of these poems are about being a mother (“With Children”), Sanctuary is also about being the child of a mother (“Escape from the Old Country”). In measured lines that are often humorous (“Asian Driver: The Sestina”), Su explores the risks that an individual can and can’t take as a member of any community: a neighborhood, a family, a racial group, a gender, a parent.

Adrienne Su was born in 1967 and raised in Atlanta. She received her AB from Harvard and an MFA from the University of Virginia. Her essays have been published in Saveur , Prairie Schooner , and Beard House . Her awards include a Pushcart Prize, as well as residencies at Yaddo and The MacDowell Colony. Her poems have appeared in Best American Poetry , Asian American Poetry: The Next Generation , and Poetry 30: Thirtysomething American Thirtysomething Poets . Su teaches at Dickinson College. She is also the author of Middle Kingdom (Alice James Books, 1997).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781933149066
Publisher: Manic D Press, Inc.
Publication date: 04/15/2006
Pages: 96
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.30(d)

About the Author

Adrienne Su was born in 1967 and raised in Atlanta. She received her A.B. from Harvard, and an M.F.A. from the University of Virginia. Awards include a Pushcart Prize as well as residencies at Yaddo and MacDowell. Adrienne teaches at Dickinson College. She is the author of Middle Kingdom (Alice James) and Sanctuary (Manic D).

Table of Contents

The English Canon9
Escape from the Old Country10
New York12
Fear of Flying13
Men at Forty15
In the Maternity Shop17
Wedding Gifts19
Summer of the Abducted Child20
China II22
Foreign Languages23
Ars Longa28
Sleep When the Baby Sleeps30
China III31
I Can't Become a Buddhist32
Female Infanticide: A Guide for Mothers39
From the Provinces41
Things Chinese47
Asian Driver: The Sestina49
Asian Driver: The Haiku51
Postpartum Vocabulary52
The First Trimester54
Woman under a Roof55
Early Work57
With Children61
The Girls Learn to Levitate62

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