Bad Summon

Bad Summon Summary

Winner of the Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize

Bad Summon explores the relationship between the majesty of nature and the quiet violence humans inflict upon themselves and others. The poems are dipped in loss, traveling between death and mountains, romance and rivers. They are addicted to the truth of experience and the energy behind regret. Bad Summon conjures its own ghost. According to David Baker, the judge who selected the winning manuscript, this is a “surprising, coherent, original collection of lyric poems. I felt peril, heartbreak, catastrophe, sorrow, genuine soulfulness. It’s also funny, yet its humor is not comic but possesses a terrible gravity.” This is a volume every poetry lover will want to explore.

[In this one we aren’t exactly drowning]

but we are falling through water.

Quieter than we expect. Churning

is how we’ll later describe it.

Our arms dig out two wet Cs,

a heart if you want to look at it

that way. Though the body is always

in between—that unoriginal arrow. 

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