Maggie Nelson’s third collection of poems combines a wanderer’s attention to landscape with a deeply personal exploration of desire, heartbreak, resilience, accident, and flux.
Something Bright, Then Holes explores the problem of losing then recovering sight and insight – of feeling lost, then found, then lost again. The book’s three sections range widely, and include a long sequence of Niedecker-esque meditations written at the shore of a polluted urban canal, a harrowing long poem written at a friend’s hospital bedside, and a series of unsparing, crystalline lyrics honoring the conjoined forces of love and sorrow.
Whatever the style, the poems are linked by Nelson’s singular poetic voice, as sly and exacting as it is raw. The collection is a testament to Nelson’s steadfast commitment to chart the facts of feeling, whatever they are, and at whatever the cost.
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