Join us in the bookstore for a night of poetry in celebration of BED by Elizabeth Metzger!
Bed (Tupelo Press)
WINNER of the 2021 SUNKEN GARDEN POETRY PRIZE
Let me confess to having taken the easy way in. My mind first went to the noun (where we sleep), then to the verb (“to sleep with”). Yours may have too, but the more time you spend with this remarkable book, the more you might come to think of planting, tending, picking. A bed of roses—or indeed, no bed of roses. Elizabeth Metzger’s poems act as both repositories and engines of mystery, of “secrets other secrets / have rubbed away,” yet their mysteriousness never feels coy. There’s a difference between hiding information and asserting control over how it’s revealed. “I stayed off-center,” she writes, and to me this has always seemed like one of the better places from which to view things, but hers is furthermore a poetry that recognizes, as Gertrude Stein put it, “there is no use in a center.” Among Metzger’s many gifts is her ability to describe complicated positions simply, facing down the conundrums of language and perspective to devastating effect: “The children left me. / You say they came.”
—from the Judge’s Citation by Mark Bibbins
Elizabeth Metzger is the author of the chapbook Bed, selected by Mark Bibbins for the Tupelo Sunken Garden Contest, forthcoming in 2021, and Lying In, her second full-length collection, forthcoming from Milkweed in 2023. Her first book, The Spirit Papers (University of Massachusetts Press, 2017), received the Juniper Prize for Poetry, and her chapbook The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death was published by Horsethief Books in 2017. Her poems have been published in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Poetry Magazine, American Poetry Review, The Nation, and the Academy of American Poets' Poem-a-Day. Her prose has appeared in Conjunctions, Literary Hub, Guernica, and Boston Review. She is a poetry editor at The Los Angeles Review of Books. You can find her work at elizabethmetzger.com.
Callie Siskel is the author of Arctic Revival, selected by Elizabeth Alexander for a 2014 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship. Her poems appear in Ploughshares, A Public Space, Yale Review, and other journals. She is a 2020-22 Wallace Stegner Fellow, a Dornsife Doctoral Fellow in Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Southern California, and a poetry editor at the Los Angeles Review of Books.
Paul Tran is the author of the debut poetry collection, All the Flowers Kneeling, forthcoming from Penguin Poets in February 2022. Their work appears in The New Yorker, The Nation, Best American Poetry, and elsewhere. A recipient of the Discovery/Boston Review Poetry Prize, as well as fellowships from the Poetry Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, Paul is currently a Visiting Faculty in Poetry at Pacific University MFA in Writing and a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University.