Afterfeast

by Lisa Hiton

$18.95

WINNER of the DORSET PRIZE for POETRY
Selected by Mary Jo Bang

 

Published: October 2021
Format: Paperback

Available on backorder

ISBN: 978-1-946482-56-3 Categories: ,

“These brilliant poems are covertly grounded in metaphysical questions, such as: Where is the line between one’s ever-evolving consciousness and the only slightly more static ‘material’ world? And the brain, is that behavior or matter? And love, what’s that? To explore these questions, vast categories and fluid distinctions are fractured and then woven back together to create an oracular, constructed self—a like-minded speaker, who, like us, has five senses as well as countless more that extend perception into other realms. This speaker lives in a dream world of her own making that is set, like a body inside its skin, in the real world that chance has granted her. She—American, Jewish, lesbian—lives inside history and dislocation, inside death and its sister, persistence (“rotgut of pine needles. / Bees do a deathhurdle over the edge, yet I do not transform”). In ‘Kavala,’ titled for the ancient Greek city that was once known as Neapolis (new city) the moon says: ‘I // tell you / what this silence stands for’. The voice of the timeless lyric moon is the poet’s voice. Her voice becomes the voice of Time talking to Space about what it is to be human. And yet, in the world of these poems, as in our world, we also have Formica, Pringles, melting butter and a matching yellow swimsuit. In other words, we have all the realities: the real, the surreal, the unreal, and the existential irreal. We need them all because any self, poetic construct or flesh-and-blood, inhabits all of these and stays busy trying to make sense of the ways in which they intersect.”

— from the Judge’s Citation by Mary Jo Bang

Lisa Hiton’s Afterfeast begins by considering philosophical questions arising from the experience of desire and intimacy: What does love reveal about — and make possible within — the individual?  Can we ever truly understand another person’s experience of the world around them? To what extent is the other ultimately inaccessible, a world unto herself? Pillared by massive, ambitious poems in the tradition of Modernism, these lyrics imbue landscapes as varied as Greece and America with new tension, new significance, as the speaker searches for answers to these provocative questions of love and inheritance. Through her graceful curation of imagery and enviable command of narrative, Hiton ultimately transforms our understanding of history and desire.

Lisa Hiton is a poet, filmmaker, and teacher. She’s the author of the chapbook Variation on Testimony and her work has been published or is forthcoming in Lambda Literary, New South, Linebreak, The Paris-American, Hayden’s Ferry Review, and The Common. She holds an MFA in Poetry from Boston University and an M.Ed. in Arts in Education from Harvard University. Lisa is a Senior Poetry Editor at The Adroit Journal. 

Additional information

Weight 0.25 lbs
Dimensions 6 × 9 in