Nature provides the lexicon of Kinds of Snow. The poems in this remarkable new collection by Su Smallen negotiate many kinds of loss, metaphorically represented as kinds of snow.
“I’ve had this small theory for quite some time now that there is a specific sound that comes from the poetry in the Midwest of North America. A sweet plain chant—language direct, unvarnished, luminous—a kind of gratitude shot through the work for the beauty of the place. Perhaps nothing looms larger there than snow: its radical erasure accompanies you half the year. Su Smallen’s new poems, a lexicon of snow, sing with notes of grief, sorrow, joy and resilience, pondering that great midwestern element. Her poems say: ‘Squirrels do not remember what they bury, they make a field of chance.’ They say: ‘Printing words brings forward dark space, brings forward what I protect.’ Maybe you’d have to grow up in that place to understand my theory. But I felt that tune from page one of this book and I am grateful for what this talented poet brings forward: pressing with renewed trust her words onto the pages the way you step—well, through snow. H.D., Hilda Doolittle, the imagist poet from the 1930s, wrote: ‘I go where I love and where I am loved, into the snow: I go to the things I love with no thought of duty, or pity.’ Neither pity nor duty pushes our poet forward. What is it then? Love, I’d say. Can’t have enough of that.” —Spencer Reece, author of The Road to Emmaus
PRAISE for Kinds of Snow
“Smallen’s poems raise snow to the level of epistomology, and they sparkle with images that capture grief and memory, loss and love, in kaleidoscopic surprise.” —Barbara Ras, author of The Last Skin
“Fervently written as if on snow with snow and about snow, a negotiation of re-entering what needs to be re-membered—and the glistening stays with us, still, even after we leave the field.”
—Sophie Cabot Black, author of The Exchange
SU SMALLEN is the author of six collections of poetry. Her first collection, Weight of Light, was nominated for the Pushcart Press Editor’s Book Award, and Buddha, Proof was a Minnesota Book Award Finalist. Su was awarded the Jane Kenyon Poetry Prize, several fellowships and grants including from the Jerome Foundation, and residencies including with the St. Croix Watershed Research Station. With Laurel Poetry Collective, she published books and broadsides for ten years. Su was a professional choreographer and dancer, and her poetry has served as scores for dance and film, including Miracle of the Spring. www.susmallen.com
Kinds of Snow by Su Smallen
PUB DATE: October 28, 2016
5.5 x 8.5; Paperback Original; 104 pages; $14.95
Author available for readings and interviews—national publicity
planned for launch and book tour with festival readings.
Distributed by Midpoint Trade Books, Ingram’s, Baker & Taylor.
Available wherever books are sold.