Every Lash (Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry #28) (Paperback)
This collection’s title—as in tether, strike, eyelash, welt—is a nod to the fluidity of language and the foolish penchant we have for naming things, including ourselves. The poems refuse to navigate, choosing instead to face head-on the snares of gender, patriarchy, and parenting. In the closing environmental poems of farewell, the speaker regains communion with nature through the ageing body.
About the Author
LEIGH ANNE COUCH’s Houses Fly Away was published by Zone 3 Press in 2007. Her poems have been published in magazines including PANK, Pleiades, Gulf Coast, Subtropic, Smartish Pace, and Cincinnati Review, and featured in Verse Daily and the collection The Echoing Green (Penguin). She lives in Sewanee, Tennessee, with writer Kevin Wilson and their sons.
“Poem by poem, line by line, and word by word, Every Lash sings of our complex human entanglements with places, the past and all the other creatures we meet on the road. Earthy and soulful, funny and fierce, I needed these poems. We all do.”—Jenny Browne, Texas Poet Laureate, author of Dear Stranger and judge
“Although these startling poems are grounded in the familiar world, they constantly reach for—and touch—the mysteries underlying. Haunted by both love and death, their voice delves into fissures of mind at once recognizable and utterly strange. Playful and frequently very funny, Leigh Anne Couch’s poems are also quietly fierce, tender, and brave.”—Chase Twichell, author of Things as It Is
“The gorgeous, wise, and capacious poems in Every Lash offer up an index of love: young love, durable love, mother’s love, child’s love, past love, present love, love of nature, love of language, love of the living, and, inevitably, love of the dying. ‘Off kilter and compulsive, my heart,’ Leigh Anne Couch writes, enfolding us in poems as generous as a spring pasture or a handsome stranger you met when you were young in Italy. This is a book that teaches gratitude, even awe, for all the selves that life and love allow us to be and to become.”—Cecily Parks, author of O’Nights
“The world of Every Lash is beautifully feral: thorny and volatile but not without sweetness, too. Within this wilderness, Couch is a guide whose voice and eyes you instantly trust. Her nimble lines bridge inner and outer landscapes, each poem the map of a brilliant mind at work.”—Caki Wilkinson, author of Circles Where the Head Should Be
"Leigh Anne Couch’s poems thrum with blood. Half the poems in this book are about a love so full you can feel the author’s heart beating fast in her throat. But you cannot have only the good, golden light of love. What would it mean without the sinister ply of shadow around its edges? The poems in Every Lash show us not only how many different people we all are, but how many different people women in particular are forced to be, as the speaker of these poems admits, 'I want to tell you more but the girl inside won’t take the chain off the door.' You must read these wise and thrilling poems, and let her let you in."—Cate Marvin, author of Oracle