In DeSiro's subversive and performative collection, that takes as its subject the postmodern straight woman's relationship to straight men, every line reads boldly toward wit, through to wit's philosophical brother, paradox. Think Bishop. Think Millay. Don't think Shakespeare, as you are brought under the sly spell these poems cast, weaving the artifact that is both the poem and the exquisite trapping of The Love Relationship itself. DeSiro, as Sonnetess, riffs into this most ancient dilemma bound in a poetics that we are simply, in no way, beyond.
-Deborah Schwartz, author of A Girl Could Disappear Like This
Simple as a Sonnet offers narrative snapshots of love held, lost, and sought, encounters in which "what the mind creates / the body accepts as real." With a delicate sense of form-especially of the interrogative possibilities of the sonnet-DeSiro composes verses of dreamscapes, sexuality, the loneliness and uncertainty even within intimacy, and the politics of "yield[ing] gracefully." These poems root for what is as much as they aspire to what might be. Within "the ampersands of chance," the voices here commit to trying, to hoping: "Not my style or my size. But / of course I tried it on."
-Allison Adair, author of The Clearing
This book is as wry as its tongue-in-cheek title, self-aware and scorchingly honest, like the big sister or best friend who'll always give it to you straight. DeSiro takes as her subject a modern woman's search for romantic fulfillment, its asymmetries and its indignities, its charades and its compromises, showing how love can be, at one moment, tender as a kiss and, at the next, tender as a bruise. Amid the sleaze and setbacks and soured dreams, she harnesses her musical affinities to provide achingly lovely glimpses of the transcendent, the bedroom window-blind becoming "a grand staff / where the full moon floats like a perfect / whole note," honoring the heart's resilience and the courage required to plead guilty to "wanting love; wanting; love."
-Jenna Le, author of A History of the Cetacean American Diaspora