The National Book Award finalist. “Limón’s poems are like fires: charring the page, but leaving a smoke that remains past the close of the book.”—The Millions
Bright Dead Things examines the chaos that is life, the dangerous thrill of living in a world you know you have to leave one day, and the search to find something that is ultimately “disorderly, and marvelous, and ours.”
A book of bravado and introspection, of 21st century feminist swagger and harrowing terror and loss, this fourth collection considers how we build our identities out of place and human contact—tracing in intimate detail the various ways the speaker’s sense of self both shifts and perseveres as she moves from New York City to rural Kentucky, loses a dear parent, ages past the capriciousness of youth, and falls in love. Limón has often been a poet who wears her heart on her sleeve, but in these extraordinary poems that heart becomes a “huge beating genius machine” striving to embrace and understand the fullness of the present moment. “I am beautiful. I am full of love. I am dying,” the poet writes. Building on the legacies of forebears such as Frank O’Hara, Sharon Olds, and Mark Doty, Limón’s work is consistently generous and accessible—though every observed moment feels complexly thought, felt, and lived.
“These poems are, as my students might say, hella intimate. They are meticulously honed and gorgeously crafted.”―Huffington Post
“Limón’s work is destined to find a place with readers on the strength of her voice alone. Her intensity here is paradoxically set against the often slow burn of life in Kentucky, and the results will please readers.”—Flavorwire