Black Metamorphoses

Product Details
$17.00  $15.81
Etruscan Press
Publish Date
5.8 X 8.9 X 0.4 inches | 0.4 pounds

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About the Author
Shanta Lee Gander is the author of Ghettoclaustrophobia: Dreamin of Mama While Trying to Speak Woman in Woke Tongues, the winner of the 2020 Diode Press full-length book prize with an honorable mention from the Sheila Margaret Motton prize, and reviews featured in the Poetry Foundation's Harriet Books, Seven Days, and the Kenyon Review. Black Metamorphoses is Gander's second full length poetry collection inspired by her lifelong love of mythology, was shortlisted for the 2021 Cowles Poetry Book Prize, and named a finalist in the 2021 Hudson prize. When Gander is not writing poetry, she is working on her memoir project, doing arts and culture reviews for Vermont Public Radio, and tending to her photography projects. She has an undergraduate degree in Women, Gender, and Sexuality from Trinity College, an M.B.A. from the University of Hartford, and her M.F.A. in Creative Non-Fiction and Poetry from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She teaches Media Studies at The Putney School and enjoys anything that allows her to explore beneath the surface (especially breaking into abandoned places). To see her visual art or read more of her work, visit:

Sometimes you have to reach far and wide to get at the
truth. The reaching is the "birthing [of a] new alphabet for desire." Shanta
Lee Gander is in search of that new language, an unbroken path to the truth.
Inspired by Ovid, her Black Metamorphoses fuses new poetry
with old forms to make things right through needful change. The travesty of
slavery and the discovery of hope "bring us nectar that bathes wounds." Read
this book and be dazzled into a new way of seeing.

--Pablo Medina, Foreigner's
Song: New and Selected Poems

Starting before Eve, Shanta Lee
Gander's collection, Black Metamorphoses,
begins with an earnest desire to know what will be buried in us, in our blood.
What is left in the wake of our hunger? What myths travel the wind, expand,
implode, pull us in? Gander sees gods reincarnate everywhere and paints them
anew, haints in the garden, in the copper, in a leather purse, even "These
fingernails filled with Black body" are illumined herein. Black Metamorphoses posits that Black folks are nearly invincible,
eternal. Despite what we carry and how far, we'll keep on living.

Bingham-Risher, Soul Culture: Black Poets, Books, and Questions that Grew Me

hesitate to call any work of contemporary poetry an epic but no other word will describe Shanta Lee Gander's Black
. Gander is an audacious mythmaker, inspired by Ovid
but also keen to debunk the Eurocentric patriarchy that he represents. In a
series of wildly ambitious and formally inventive monologues and character
studies, Gander offers a searing threnody for the victims of slavery and the
African Diaspora. Yet the book is also a moving and hard-won celebration of the
black body: the rituals of mourning give way to empowerment. As she writes in
one poem, "It be
both crown and burden, / glory of yours and grievance of othas/ Be not touched
by jus any hands, / it be bridge to your making or the road to a bound soul." Black Metamorphoses is a stunning accomplishment.

--David Wojahn, From the Valley of Making: Essays on the Craft of Poetry (Poets
On Poetry)