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About the AuthorChelsea Bunn is a poet and educator living in New Mexico. Her work appears in publications in print and online, including Best New Poets 2018, Sky Island Journal, Maudlin House, Apathy Magazine, The Ellis Review, Cover, The Big Windows Review, Big City Lit, and other journals and anthologies. She earned her MFA in Poetry and her BA in English at Hunter College in New York, where she received a teaching fellowship, a Norma Lubetsky Friedman Scholarship, and taught creative writing for eleven years. She was selected as Thinker in Residence by Art in Odd Places in 2016, was a finalist for the Lit Fest Fellowship for Emerging Writers in 2018, was awarded the Academy of American Poets Prize twice, and was named a Best New Poet of 2018. Her poems have received recognition from The National Federation of State Poetry Societies, Poetry Society of America, Lighthouse Writers Workshop, Georgetown Review, and elsewhere. Born and raised in NYC, she currently serves as Assistant Professor of Creative Writing for the Bachelor of Fine Arts program at Navajo Technical University.
"It can help to imagine anguish / as a small creature pawing at your hem, / wanting your attention," Chelsea Bunn writes in this moving, unflinching collection. As she attends "the catacombs of worry" where the mind responds to what the body suffers, reprieve is hard won, provisional. Bunn's poems investigate the ways in which redemption comes through acts of language. How attentively she listens into experience in order to transform what she hears into poetry.
-Donna Masini, 4:30 Movie
The poems in Chelsea Bunn's Forgiveness reckon with how the spirit of a woman survives and thrives in the midst of and in spite of love and loss. In one poem, for instance, the speaker says, "My body knows / what to do to stay alive," and each of these poems seem to go about the business of proving as much.
-Jericho Brown, The New Testament, Please
"This is the year of awakening" begins Chelsea Bunn's stunning chapbook, Forgiveness. Tender in rage, flamboyant in mercy, these poems break the heart and put it back together again. We are fortunate to have this marvelous young poet among us.
-Jan Heller Levi, Orphan, Skyspeak
Chelsea Bunn's book Forgiveness begs to be read over and over. These are poems that grieve and yell and fight and live and, most importantly, reveal. Bunn's poems show us the depths of human compassion and failure in language that sizzles and soothes. Reader, the openness of these poems is an invitation into our own heads, into our own numerous wounds and joys so that we may save ourselves "from returning/ to the dark rooms of [our] suffering."