The Carrying

Poems

Ada Limón,

The Carrying: Poems
 
 
NBCC Award Winner: “The narrative lyrics in this remarkable collection . . . could stand as compressed stories about anxiety and the body.” —The New York Times

Vulnerable, tender, acute, these are serious poems, brave poems, exploring with honesty the ambiguous moment between the rapture of youth and the grace of acceptance. A daughter tends to aging parents. A woman struggles with infertility—“What if, instead of carrying / a child, I am supposed to carry grief?”—and a body seized by pain and vertigo as well as ecstasy. A nation convulses: “Every song of this country / has an unsung third stanza, something brutal.” And still National Book Award finalist Ada Limón shows us, as ever, the persistence of hunger, love, and joy, the dizzying fullness of our too-short lives. “Fine then, / I’ll take it,” she writes. “I’ll take it all.”

“Gorgeous, thought-provoking . . . simple, striking images.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Exquisite.” —The Washington Post

“Pitch-perfect . . . full of poems to savor and share . . . She writes with remarkable directness about painful experiences normally packaged in euphemism and, in doing so, invites the readers to enter a world where abundant joy exists alongside and simultaneous to loss.” —Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry


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