Upside Down in the Dark
Upside Down in the Dark
“[A] powerfully evocative collection, lit with flashes of grief and humor, and masterful at evoking the way ordinary life crystallizes into something hieratic and profound.”
Available in both print and digital formats.
Since Carol Potter’s Alice James books, Before We Were Born, (1990) and Upside Down in the Dark, 1995, Potter has published three more volumes of poetry: Short History of Pets, winner of the Cleveland State Poetry Center Award in 1998 as well as the Balcones Prize; Otherwise Obedient, Red Hen Press, 2008, a finalist for the Lambda Prize in LBGBT poetry ; and finally, Some Slow Bees, 2014, winner of the FIELD poetry prize from Oberlin College Press. Other publications include poems in Poetry, New England Review, Los Angeles Review, Agni, The Massachusetts Review; Poetry Daily, FIELD, The Journal, The American Poetry Review, Arts & Letters, The Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner and several anthologies including most recently, the Best of the Los Angeles Review, and Roads Taken: Vermont Poetry Anthology. Potter won a Pushcart prize in 2001, and was granted residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell, Funcacion Valparaiso (Mojacar, Spain), Villa Montalvo, and Centrum. Other awards include the 2015 Ekphrasis Poetry Award, the 2015 Northampton, MA Biennial Poetry Contest, and a Writer in Residence month at the Thurber House in Columbus, Ohio 2002. Potter is on the faculty of the Antioch University low-residency MFA program, and teaches part-time at the Community College of Vermont as well as conducting private workshops and individual mentoring and book manuscript consulting. More info can be found at cwpotterverse.net
“These poems by Carol Potter, about being a woman, a mother, a lesbian, are remarkably pure and full of energy. Written with love, they seem to imply that, yes, there is pain, but what a miracle there is for its setting. These poems are a rare meeting of craft and spontaneity, as if the poet were standing by the flume of a spillway and shaping the flow with her hands.”
“The sense of dislocation—of homelessness—that is at the heart of this collection functions, paradoxically, as the source of intimate observation and recognition of the dramas of ‘home’ everywhere. Kaleidoscopically, scenes and people, present and past, near and far, settle into patterns of ‘memory crystal,’ brightly colored and particular, yet with few epiphanies or tidy resolutions, suggesting that, with a turn of the wrist, another equally absorbing arrangement might be achieved. Potter…seeks no high ground, no safety or rainbow’s end, but allows the self to be likewise given and withdrawn, with poignancy and without fear. That desire pales in these poems before the irresistible ‘what is,’ in all its variety and instability, is what intrigues me most about Upside Down in the Dark.”
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