American poet Mei-mei Berssenbrugge makes her New Directions debut with this breathtaking new collectionA poet of “epic perception” and “subtle music,” Mei-mei Berssenbrugge opens form into long, shimmering lines of profound emotional intensity and multivalent voices, splintered with space, silence, and desert light. Her new collection of poems, Hello, the Roses, is composed of three parts. The opening poems delve into an array of unities, of myth and landscape, fashion and culture, experience and forgetting, boys and ravens. The central poems explore an invisible world where plants, animals, and the self communicate and coexist. The final part contemplates the individual’s relationship to night, weather, and cosmological time as Berssenbrugge limns a karmic temporal continuum, a mandala of perception. Throughout are the roses, transforming slowly, almost imperceptibly,deepening awareness, creating fields: a rosette of civilization ― a wild rose, a Delphic rose, imagined roses, white cabbage roses, an Apache rose, a Bourbon rose, our sacred mortality “saturated with being” in pink petals and gray-green leaves. Hello, the Roses is poetry enraptured with the phenomenal fullness of the world.
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Mei-mei Berssenbrugge was born in Beijing and grew up in Massachusetts. She is the author of twelve books of poetry, including Empathy, Nest, and I Love Artists. A Lit Cloud, her recent collaboration with the artist Kiki Smith, was published by Galerie Lelong in 2012. She lives in New York City and northern New Mexico.
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