The Alphabet Not Unlike the World: Poems

The Alphabet Not Unlike the World: Poems

by Katrina Vandenberg
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The Alphabet Not Unlike the World: Poems by Katrina Vandenberg

In her accomplished second collection of poems, Katrina Vandenberg writes from the intersection of power and forgiveness. With poems named for letters of the Phoenician alphabet, and employing such innovative forms as the ancient ghazal, Vandenberg deciphers the seemingly indecipherable in this extraordinary becoming of self through language. Moving between the physical and the abstract, the individual and the collective, Alphabet Not Unlike the World unearths meaning—with astonishing beauty—from the pain of loss and separation.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781571314468
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publication date: 05/15/2012
Pages: 96
Sales rank: 932,134
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Katrina Vandenberg is the co-author, with Todd Boss, of the chapbook entitled On Marriage (Red Dragonfly Press, 2008), and the author of the poetry collection Atlas (Milkweed Editions, 2004). Her poems and essays have appeared in the American Scholar, Post Road Magazine, Orion Magazine, the Iowa Review, and other magazines. She is the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship, a Bush Artist Fellowship, a Loft-McKnight Award in Poetry, and a Tennessee Williams Scholarship to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. In 2008–09, she was the resident fellow at the Amy Clampitt House in Lenox, Massachusetts. She lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota, with her husband, the novelist John Reimringer.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments VIII

Prologue: A Ghazal 2


Self-Portrait in 1970 7

B 8

The Autumn Our Babysitter Was Murdered by Her Boyfriend 9

Siren Song 10

C Ghazal 11

Palinode for Adolescence 12

Hot Air Balloons over Lenox, MA 14


D Ghazal 19

Live Through This (1994) 20

E 21

My Sister Visits Her Ex in Prison Once a Year to Ask Him Whether He Did It 24

Courage and horror stand side by side 25

Say something 27

Once, he had brain fever 29

Saint Kevin's Bed 31

Poem on Tim's Thirty-Fifth Birthday 32

The Monks' Fishing Hut 33

Bearing Witness 34

Cell 37

N 38

Winged Monkeys 40

Cretaceous Moth Trapped in Amber (Lament in Two Voices) 42


Connemara 47

1 On the Bog Road

2 Fuchsia

Making Her Black Bean Chili Again 49

Detroit 50

The Night the Painter Unpinned Her Hair 51

We Kept Having to Say 52

Abyss 53

On Marriage 54

K 55


She thinks of herself as a green Dodge van 58

Oarlock, Oar (Y,W,V,U,F) 60

Handwriting Analysis 62

Photograph: My Parents' First Christmas 63

Mirror Palace 64

Virginity 66

By Now the Warning Bell Has Rung and None of Us Can Drive 67

Transparent 69


M 73

O, P, R, S (Eye/Mouth/Head/Tongue) 75

Q 76

I think of myself as the old borrowed bicycle 79

Earthworms 80

X 81

Plums 82

Z Ghazal 84

Notes 87

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The Alphabet Not Unlike the World: Poems 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
(Do you think I would have already left if I didn't want to be here?) *Looks at her.*