Winner of the 2012 New Issues Poetry Prize
Marni Ludwig has a vast and original mind and spirit, which along with her quiet, sometimes sharp humor, and her tenderness, implicate everyone. Her skill is like a good horse, who becomes one with the rider and with her wild, unheard of travels. Here is the real thing.
Like surrealist paintings, these poems construct their psychological truths from real world matter that’s been estranged and made mysterious—think of Dalí, ordinary pocket watches, yes, but now bent to an edge, or draped over the branch of a distant leafless tree, or reclining on something that looks like it might be a body part. And as there, here too, the disquieting landscape has a beating-heart hypnotic logic to it. “The birds sing: systole,/diastole. The puppeteer/appears to be wearing/the same outfit/as her marionette.” I have rarely loved a book of poems as I do this one.
—Mary Jo Bang
Marni Ludwig’s work exhibits the keen symptoms of some kind of magic. That which we lov’st well— the breathtaking violence of precision, the transcendence. From what “Where” could these adumbrated machines have issued? The heart is handsome and the craft is shot with lucency. And all this takes place intravenously. Ruin reigns. Beauty is all over the place! I’ve been waiting for this book to happen for a long time.
Marni Ludwig is also the author ofLittle Box of Cotton and Lightning, selected by Susan Howe for a 2011 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship. She holds degrees from Sarah Lawrence College, Columbia University, and Washington University in St. Louis. Her poems have appeared inBoston Review, Boulevard, FIELD,Gulf Coast, High Chair, JERRY,Western Humanities Review, and other journals. She lives in Athens, GA, where she is a PhD candidate at the University of Georgia, and in Brooklyn, NY. www.marniludwig.com