The Sharp Edges of Water

The Sharp Edges of Water

by Angélique Jamail

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This is a book of stories as much as a collection of poems. In it, the characters swerve between the rain-drenched, tree-lined, concrete plains of Houston and the voluptuous, dynamic terrain of Los Angeles. They face multiple realities, and though they’re earnestly grounded, they sometimes swim in the waters of magic realism. Their story is both relatable and a little bit surreal.

“For Jamail, loss is the fecund territory complicated by the travails of geographic movement, emotional upheaval, and cultural dissonance and where the poetry sings its best.”

“THE SHARP EDGES OF WATER is a collection of superbly crafted poems…poems of faith and freeways, of lies and longing. Angélique sees the details of Los Angeles and love, with a necessity of details we locals have forgotten. As the title implies, you might get wet reading them. Wear appropriate clothing.”
-- Rick Lupert, author of BEAUTIFUL MISTAKES and GOD WRESTLER, creator of

Product Details

BN ID: 2940155911616
Publisher: Angélique Jamail
Publication date: 12/15/2018
Sold by: Smashwords
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Angélique Jamail’s poetry and essays have appeared in over two dozen anthologies and journals, including New Reader Magazine, Waxwing, Time-Slice, Improbable Worlds, Pluck Magazine, The Milk of Female Kindness––An Anthology of Honest Motherhood, Untameable City: Poems on the Nature of Houston, Femmeliterate, Bayou City Magazine, and The Enchantment of the Ordinary. Her work was selected as a Finalist for the New Letters Prize in Poetry in 2011. Her magic realism novelette Finis. (Odeon Press) has been praised by fiction writer Ari Marmell as having “some of the most real people I’ve encountered via text in a long time,” and by poet Marie Marshall as “a witty tale of conformity, prejudice, and transformation, in a world that is disturbing as much for its familiarity as for its strangeness.” She teaches Creative Writing and English in Houston. Find her online at her blog Sappho’s Torque (

Table of Contents

Foreword by Sarah Cortez

Part 1: Joyride

Moving Out

Two Cities

Los Angeles


Book with Forgotten Title

Listening for Atlantis

A Brief and Envious History of Particle Physics

His Ballad at Breakfast

The Usual

Manifest Destiny


The Awakening of Jack Brown


Joan and the City

Part 2: Dancing on the Sharpest Floors


The Hummingbirds Warned

Half-Truths Inside Villanelle

Bleeding the Sky


New Love in Dead Cornfields

Cleaning House


Barefoot on Marble Fragments

Ruby / Renew / Redux

Part 3: Those Who Hold Each Other

Plan B

Upon Taking My Kids to the Last Roller Rink Left in Houston

Summer Night Rite

Lullaby for a Crying Child

The Wilderness of Waters

Moving to Your Home


Commonly Occurring in Villages, in Hamlets, and on Hearths Around Our Great Land

Wedding List Poem

Floodtide: My Unhiding

The Modern Woman’s Guide to Modern Life

The Path Often Traveled, the Path Less Celebrated, the Path of Ennobled Resistance (A Rule-

Breaking Poem for a Nail-Biting Vigil)

Letter to My Child / Self

Author’s Note

Other Notes


Previous Publications

Index of First Lines

Customer Reviews