The joys of discovery! I’ve never heard of Juliana Leslie before I came across the following tweet from “Poetry’s Cross-Dressing Kingmaker” (I just love that)
Stephen Burt‘s recommendation didn’t disappoint. Clicking on the Everyday Genius link, I immediately fell in love with the first two lines of “Confluence,” the first of four poems by Leslie:
A patient feeling I heard you say
a patient mouth absorbs the spark of a secret train
Leslie writes great opening lines, and when I say “opening lines,” I don’t only mean this poem and the other three (“Softer More Radiant Signal,” “Two Ideas,” and “Two More Ideas in a Different Mode”). I’m talking about how all four “parts” of “Confluence” have great openings. And middles. And endings.
Let me correct myself then: Leslie writes
opening great lines. More examples:
Actually, after reading the prose poems John Gallaher shares here, Leslie writes really beautifully, whether in lines or not. Rob McClennan’s review of Leslie’s debut collection offers more samples of her prose poems and lyrics, both short and long.
Now I’m itching to buy a copy of More Radiant Signal AND its follow-up, Green is for World, scheduled for release this November. In the meantime, I’m going to look for more of her poems online and will just leave you with this short video of her reading some poems.