by Ariana Reines
Fence Books, 2011
128 pages / $16.95 Buy From Fence
Three falls ago, I was in one of my first legit poetry workshops (that particular workshop during which I realized that poetry was going to be one of those things that would be part of my life for forever, like Lyme Disease or an eating disorder) and I was freaking out about being a girl and wanting to write a particular kind of poem and feeling that I wasn’t allowed to do so. My professor, who was/is this very wise man, a carpenter as well as a poet and probably a prophet of some kind, told me I might be interested in reading Ariana Reines. Since I was at the time a very eager and diligent student I went to my room and read every one of her poems I could find online, and as it was right before Christmas I sent my mom the following e-mail that night:
to Debra, debiallied
Also every book ever written by Ariana Reines instead of just the one. There aren’t that many and they aren’t the expensive because she’s only 26. In fact there are only two, Coeur de Lion and The Cow, three if you count her translation of My Heart Laid Bare by Baudelaire which I would also enjoy. Feel free to pass this along to anyone you know who’s in the market for a Christmas present for me. Those books are now the most important things on my list because they are the most important books that have been written in a very long time.
Because my mother has always bought me any book I have asked for without question, I did get these books for Christmas and I spent all of winter break that year reading them and re-reading them. Since then, because of a lot of happy cosmic circumstances, I’ve had the chance to read her work in graduate classes, write about it, see Ariana read it, and talk to her about it. What follows is a rendition of Facebook messages and e-mails between Ariana and me about her new book, Mercury, which was just released by Fence Books and can be purchased here.
January 2nd, 2012 / 1:00 am