The leaves outside are turning and gravity is covering our sidewalks in chestnuts and apples (Sir Isaac Newton would be smiling). With cooler weather on its way, we recommend grabbing a cup of tea and enjoying a title or two from these New England Review authors and translators.
Poet Jeffrey Franklin releases his second collection, Where We Lay Down (Kelsay Books). A “multifarious and expansive collection,” the book is split thematically into six explorations: Fathers and Sons, Making Love, Making War, Homing, Totem Animals, and Full Emptiness. Influenced by Franklin’s own interests in religion and spirituality, Where We Lay Down delves into human conditions around maturation and reflection. Franklin’s poem, “To a Student Who Reads ‘The Second Coming’ As Sexual Autobiography,” appeared in NER 22.3.
Machete (Knopf), the third collection from poet Tomás Q Morín, is released this month. Described as a “lyrical, dynamic, insightful collection, at once delicate and fierce, touching on climate, family, racism, growth, and life itself,” Machete explores suffering and its intersections with reactions of both anger and laughter. Morín’s poems have previously appeared in NER 35.3, NER 33.2, and NER 32.2; his piece “A Renaissance Mule” was published as an NER Digital in 2012.
Jane Wong publishes her sophomore collection, How to Not Be Afraid of Anything (Alice James Books). Composed around central themes of migration and loss, grief and alienation, How to Not Be Afraid of Anything grapples with immigrant identities as made relational to histories past and present. Wong’s poem “I Haul a House Out of the Bay” was published in NER 39.4.
My Wilderness: Poems (University of Pittsburgh Press) is the latest collection from poet Maxine Scates. Traversing the emotional landscapes of motherhood and memory through explorations of loss and empathy, My Wilderness “is a grave and beautiful archive of losses.” The book’s title poem, “My Wilderness,” appeared in NER 37.2.
Poet and writer Victoria Chang publishes Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence, and Grief with Milkweed Editions. Despite not being labelled explicitly as a poetry collection, Dear Memory encapsulates the “process of simultaneously shaping and being shaped, knowing that when a writer dips their pen into history, what emerges is poetry,” as Chang explores themes of immigrant identity, history, grief, and knowledge of the self through family relics and letters. Chang’s poetry has appeared in numerous issues since 2002, most recently NER 41.3 and NER 38.3.
Yu Xiuhua’s Moonlight Rests on My Left Palm: Poems and Essays (Astra House) is released in English through collaboration with poet and NER translator Fiona Sze-Lorrain. Thematically organized around love and writing, on mortality, the natural world, and nostalgia, the collection’s poems and essays are “in conversation with each other,” as Yu utilizes the written form to grapple with family, home, and “the reality of disability in the context of a body’s urges and desires.” Sze-Lorrain’s translations have appeared in NER 40.3 and NER 36.2.
Visit our page on Bookshop.org for cumulative seasonal lists of NER author releases.