In the Tempered Dark: Contemporary Poets Transcending Elegy–An Anthology, Forthcoming with Black Lawrence Press 2023
Editor—Lisa Fay Coutley
Historically poets have explored no two themes more than love and grief because they are opposite sides of the same emotional coin that we will all experience in unique and often unexplainable ways. While other anthologies validate the necessity of the elegy, none examine the relationship between the body in grief and the body of the poem a poet crafts to recreate an individual, visceral experience of grief. By pairing contemporary poems with micro-essays, wherein each poet will consider briefly the connection between their included poem(s) and their corresponding grief, we will initiate a dialogue designed to engage teachers, students, readers, and writers. Our goal is not to instruct poets how to craft grief poems but to illuminate the bond between bodies in grief and bodies of poems.
In the Tempered Dark will bring together contemporary work and voices that demonstrate the range of grief which feels urgent to twenty-first century poets from diverse backgrounds, at different stages in their careers, confronting assorted losses through various styles and forms. Poems coupled with micro-essays will offer intimate and inside insights appealing to novices and veterans of all genres. This book will allow readers to identify with poets and poems to grieve and to heal, and it will also consider the relationship between poet and poem. Such an examination of content and form will show how poets manipulate craft, giving voice to what can seem unsayable, transcending elegy.