An Ark of Sorts
An Ark of Sorts
Winner of the 1997 Jane Kenyon Chapbook Award
“These meticulously crafted poems unfold with a narrative drive and thematic unity worthy of a great novel. The spareness of Gilbert’s language, along with her profound stoicism, gives her work a distinctly Dicksonian quality. This is a poetry of paralysis, of late nights crying in the dark, of pushing beyond memory to live again in the present. . . . An Ark of Sorts is a survivor’s moving testament to the redemptive power of words.”
Available in both print and digital formats.
Celia Gilbert is the author of several books of poetry, including Bonfire (Alice James Books) and Queen of Darkness (Viking Press). Her poetry has appeared in Poetry, Ploughshares, The New Yorker, Southwest, and Grand Street. She is the winner of a Discovery Award and a Pushcart Prize IX. The Poetry Society of America awarded her both an Emily Dickinson Prize and a Consuelo Ford Award, and her work has been frequently anthologized. Celia Gilbert grew up in Washington D.C. She received a B.A. from Smith College and an M.A. from Boston University and was Poetry and Fiction Editor of The Boston Phoenix. After living abroad in England and France, she now lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
“Gilbert knows the grief Jane Kenyon knew when she wrote, ‘Sometimes when the wind is right it seems / that every word has been spoken to me.’ An Ark of Sorts is a compelling diary of that grief, a record of the necessary and redemptive work of working through it—‘The human work / of being greater than ourselves.’”
“These poems, eloquent, quiet, painfully clear, rise from a profound willingness to face the irremediable. This is a beautiful book—this ark built to carry survivors through the flood waters of grief and loss—this ark of covenants between the living and the dead.”
“These poems are transformed into literal necessities by the hand of a poet who writes from a time in her life when there was nothing but necessity. The poems themselves become indistinguishable from bread, wine, stone and staircase, and in this sense they are objects of force—contemplative issue—absolutely good.”
“Profound, moving poems of the hard coming-to-terms with death—this map of grief in the spare language of true poetry is an illumination of all sorrow.”
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