cloisters225

Cloisters

by Kristin Bock

$16.95

“Cloisters is a book that creates a sense of largeness despite its small borders…. Bock”s language is exquisite, wooing us into one lyric after another so swiftly that, even though we may not know where we are, we trust that Ms. Bock most certainly does. The effect is a book of almost God-like proportions: poems that we can observe and perceive but aren”t exactly certain we can fully understand…. Cloisters takes us into a world that at times seems secular and, at other times, clearly emanates from the spiritual; something akin to the afterlife, prayer. Cloisters is a book that not only explores but mimics the mysteries of human experience. We are the better for it.” –Rattle

Format: paperback

ISBN: 978-1-932195-55-2 Categories: ,

Kristin Bock’s potent and undeniably original voice sings through this award-winning first collection. Enticing readers with transcendental pastorals, her spare wordplay is tinged with gothic imagery yet laced with an easy innocence. These are poems that enlighten and arouse, assuring us that if nothing on Earth may be taken at face value, neither may anything be taken for granted or lost.

Awards:

Winner of the Tupelo Press First Book Award

Winner of the 2009 da Vinci Eye Award

Additional Information

Weight.4 lbs
Dimensions6 x .5 x 9 in

Darkling

They say I shouldn”t think of you.

As if you were a piano
at the bottom of the lake.

The worst I can do
is turn you into something.

They say I should think of you dead,

Though you are a flower,
bursting through armor.

The Hymn of the Pearl to the Moon

Cast in your image
and into darkness

we are luminous nudes

bathing
in the firelight
by cave pools

mistaking our reflections
for gods.

Return

Reverse the plough! Pluck me from this orchard of
bones—from the hummingbird flying backwards

to kiss an orchid. Free the sickle from its rust.
Break the blue cup on a balcony overlooking the sea,

and its enormous envy of the sea, and the sea itself—
its antiphonal call, its ten thousand dead languages

haunting the halls of shells marooned at our feet.
Release the Ferris wheel lying on its side—

half-buried in sand, half-eaten by a slow, salty wind.

kristen bock

Born in 1969, Kristin Bock grew up in the small farm town of Woodbury, CT. She holds a B.A. in English Literature from Southern Connecticut State University, and an MFA in poetry from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst where she teaches. Her poems have appeared in many literary magazines and journals, including Columbia, The Seattle Review, Prairie Schooner, The Black Warrior Review, and FENCE. She lives with her husband, artist Geoffrey Kostecki, in Montague, MA, where they refurbish religious murals and sculptural iconography for churches throughout New England. Bock is a contributing editor to the literary magazine Bateau, and a 2006 Massachusetts Cultural Council fellow.

“Cloisters is a book that creates a sense of largeness despite its small borders…. Bock”s language is exquisite, wooing us into one lyric after another so swiftly that, even though we may not know where we are, we trust that Ms. Bock most certainly does. The effect is a book of almost God-like proportions: poems that we can observe and perceive but aren”t exactly certain we can fully understand…. Cloisters takes us into a world that at times seems secular and, at other times, clearly emanates from the spiritual; something akin to the afterlife, prayer. Cloisters is a book that not only explores but mimics the mysteries of human experience. We are the better for it.” Rattle

“Poetry comes unbidden and it comes by design, with desire. I love this book”s adamant attentions and unashamed ardors.”” —Dara Wier

“Kristin Bock”s marvelous debut collection enacts an aesthetic of discrete moments, offering her reader an intelligence that works simultaneously upon the heart and at the margins of experience. The perspective here is edgy, nervous, compelling, and wise. In the pared delicacy of these poems, we discover both exceptional nuance and resonance—these are poems that trust their readers, poems that don”t oversell their emotions or perceptions. Kristin Bock”s poems are like the shards of a mirror that magically reflect a whole person, a whole woman, a whole mind and sensibility at work in the world. As in all of the best volumes of poetry, we come to admire the person in these poems, her vision and her character.”—David St. John, judge of the 7th Annual Tupelo Press First Book Award

“Kristin Bock”s poems are original and always surprising. Images are chiseled with great care, each word chosen with exacting particularity.” —James Tate