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She Sleeps With Dogs
"An extraordinary book not just because of the beauty of language and subject, but for its conceptual matrix and the disturbing way the poems both enliven and terrify.”
Chris Abani, author of Hands Washing Water and Song for Night.
“Maureen Owens' poems in She Sleeps With Dogs are poems of tenderness and grace; loss and grief are mitigated by hope, by a calm acceptance as well as a careful naming of the world around her that comforts and brings joy. She is a poet “smitten/by all that is airborne” as she says in her last poem. Owens quietly defines the “edge where calm meets chaos” (“Snow on the Tarmac”). There is wisdom and wildness in this book, the bravado of “gay girls walking”, and a celebration of love with all its chaos, loss, hope, and ecstasy.”
Carol Potter, author of Short History of Pets, Upside Down in the Dark,
and Before We Were Born.
“This poetry sings of love, longing and loss, the threads alternately interwoven and ripped apart. Maureen Owens writes poems of mystery and reverence, capturing the smallest and most sublime moments of life in a way that is often risky, sometimes sexy, always surprising. These are lovely poems. I am changed for having read them.”
Naomi Benaron, author of Love Letters from a Fatman.
Maureen Owens received her MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University, Los Angeles and her BA in Literature from the State University of New York at Binghamton. Maureen grew up in New Jersey and lives with her two greyhounds in Seneca Falls, New York.
In this first collection of poems, Maureen explores subjects such as loss, grief, love, sexuality, and the relationship of dogs to humans not just as companions, but also as reminders of the animal self in us all.
From the Book:
This Might Explain Things
Three dogs and a dozen beds
really only two dogs
one dead, still twelve beds
doubled, so three stacks of two beds
two stacks in the living room,
though on the couch, always a dog
so the unlucky hound has two
doubled beds to choose from.
In the bedroom, only one stack of two
because the fortunate is always in
bed with the human. There are four
beds in the car, again doubled.
Two on the patio, singles.
Now at times, we have a visitor, canine,
who brings his own bed, a sole one
but with two piles of blankets.
So, thirteen beds, and hallelujah again,
Four white, and two brown
float single file along the angle
of cornfield and tree line.
The morning light on their muscles,
slides over the reach of ribs
as a front leg stretches to step
carefully through a winter-dry field
of snow and broken cornstalks.
The white deer are spirits,
the brown ones, their guides;
maybe it's the other way around.
I want them to turn and disappear
into the trees, so I do not have to choose
the moment of leaving. They stay,
stepping ghostly along the verge.
Edging my car in step with them,
eyes fixed to the field, we move together,
I on the road, they against the trees
as if this inching forward
will ease the snap of separation.
She Sleeps With Dogs
is a 56 page hand-sewn book with spine - $15.00
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