Behind Normalcy

Available

Description

Winner of the Harriss Poetry Prize, judged by series editor Kwame Alexander and 2019 final judge Erica Dawson, Behind Normalcy is the first chapbook by Maryland-based poet Burgi Zenhaeusern. According to Teri Ellen Cross Davis, author of Haint and Poetry Coordinator at the Folger Shakespeare Library, "Behind Normalcy is an opportunity to explore the tense and probing questions we hide behind and hide from in polite society. From the juxtaposition of sending a child off to school as a photographer's death makes front-page news, to the great aunt the poet knows best by her handmade socks, Zenhaeusern has the patience and the eye to peel back the layers of everyday and reveal the small truths lying beneath. In succinct, pure lines, she documents the quiet beauty of this fragmented and complex world." Poems in Behind Normalcy have appeared previously in Passager, Forage Poetry, American Poetry Journal, Oversound, Gargoyle, and elsewhere. CityLit Press is the publishing imprint of nonprofit literary arts organization CityLit Project (www.citylitproject.org).

Product Details

Price: $9.95  $9.15
Publisher: Citylit Press
Published Date: March 15, 2020
Pages: 78
Dimensions: 5.24 X 0.19 X 7.99 inches | 0.22 pounds
Language: English
Type: Paperback
ISBN: 9781936328246
BISAC Categories:

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Reviews

"With a keen eye for detail and deft use of form, Zenhaeusern writes lovely narratives and lyrics drawing our attention to the urgency of both grief and hope. This is a wonderful collection."

-- Erica Dawson
Author of When Rap Spoke Straight to God
Director, MFA in Creative Writing
University of Tampa

"'I'm pilfering anything, ' confesses the speaker in Burgi Zenhaeusern's Behind Normalcy, and it's true. These poems shimmer with the commonplace--an apple shifting in the bowl, a rubber glove, the bus stop, a plastic shopping bag blown in the wind, our endless wars. In these pages are ordinary moments made to gleam by the poet's clean attention, formal daring, and quietly startling images. Moments made to gleam by the poet's zigzag through the day, through memory and the natural world, through the 'blinding dimness, ' to remind us that the ordinary is only ordinary if we don't look closely. Come to these poems and let them soothe the blur of days. Let them show you where and why and how 'the shimmer keeps beckoning.'"

-- Molly Spencer
Author of If the House
Professor, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
University of Michigan

"Behind Normalcy is an opportunity to explore the tense and probing questions we hide behind and hide from in polite society. From the juxtaposition of sending a child off to school as a photographer's death makes front page news, to the great aunt the poet knows best by her handmade socks, Burgi Zenhaeusern has the patience and the eye to peel back the layers of everyday and reveal the small truths lying beneath. In [after days of sun gray] she writes,

sometimes you don't
see what is
rearing up to speak
from you
until you say it

I am glad she is saying it. In succinct, pure lines, she documents the quiet beauty of this fragmented and complex world."

-- Teri Ellen Cross Davis
Author of Haint
Poetry Coordinator
Folger Shakespeare Library