Bright Dead Things: Poems (Paperback)

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Bright Dead Things: Poems By Ada Limón Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

Reading Limon’s poetry always reminds me, in the most lovely way, of the quote “I tell you this to break your heart [...] that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world.” Limon moves through so much landscape, both physical and emotional - from grief and loss, to love, finding ones place in the world, and the sweet wonders it has to offer. I cannot tell you how often the line “I want to try and be terrific, even for an hour” rings in my ears like quiet prayer. And to top it all off, reading the last line of the last poem always brings me to tears: “Say you’d still want this: us alive, right here, feeling lucky.”

— Isabelle



A finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award, Bright Dead Things examines the dangerous thrill of living in a world you must leave one day and the search to find something that is "disorderly, and marvelous, and ours."

A book of bravado and introspection, of feminist swagger and harrowing loss, this fourth collection considers how we build our identities out of place and human contact--tracing in intimate detail the ways the speaker's sense of self both shifts and perseveres as she moves from New York City to rural Kentucky, loses a dear parent, ages past the capriciousness of youth, and falls in love. Ada Lim n has often been a poet who wears her heart on her sleeve, but in these extraordinary poems that heart becomes a "huge beating genius machine" striving to embrace and understand the fullness of the present moment. "I am beautiful. I am full of love. I am dying," the poet writes. Building on the legacies of forebears such as Frank O'Hara, Sharon Olds, and Mark Doty, Lim n's work is consistently generous, accessible, and "effortlessly lyrical" (New York Times)--though every observed moment feels complexly thought, felt, and lived.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781571314710
ISBN-10: 1571314717
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publication Date: September 15th, 2015
Pages: 128
Language: English