The Fisher Queen: New & Selected Poems
Page Count: 174
Publication Date: Thursday, March 28, 2019
Cover Artwork: Rachel Parry. The Call of the Crow, cast acrylic, bird skull, net, crow feathers, 360 x 160 x 80 mm and 2600 x 120 mm - rachelparryartist.com
About this Book
Drawing together poems from six award-winning collections, Kathryn Kirkpatrick introduces the best of her poetry with the voice of the Fisher Queen, the otherworldly spouse of the mythic Fisher King. Hers is a story of wounding, equal to her husband’s, and just as connected to a wasteland, figured here as 20th and 21st century environmental devastation. These poems explore the multiple exiles of living in a woman’s body; traversing boundaries of region, nation, and class; and confronting human violations of the natural world. Moving between the quotidian and the mythic, Kirkpatrick’s multi-voiced lyrics constitute a powerful quest.
Praise for Our Held Animal Breath and Her Small Hands Were Not Beautiful:
In beautifully crafted poems, Kirkpatrick, writing from Appalachia, explores her connections to Ulster, where her Scotch-Irish ancestors departed from, and to the American South and West, where they settled. At the heart of this collection is Kirkpatrick’s resolution through language of the tangled terrain of ancestry, a feat she achieves because she is “a woman, who makes her own country,” one formed by family history, the body, and multiple allegiance to, and love of, place.
A quiet but insistent ecofeminist anthem.
In venturing beyond her own lyricized experience, Kirkpatrick discovers a transpersonal self that as a citizen of poetry speaks with a vulnerable but strong feminine voice to both women and men, in a universal human language filled with pathos, hope, political exigency, self-accountability, tenderness, tough-mindedness, and a "cold eye" that witnesses poignantly to what so few other American poets seem willingly to take on as a "suitable subject," namely the grief of our time and place.
KATHRYN KIRKPATRICK was born in Columbia, South Carolina, and grew up in the Philippines, Germany, Texas and the Carolinas. Educated at Winthrop University and UNC-Chapel Hill, she holds a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Emory University, where she received an Academy of American Poets poetry prize. Today she lives with her husband, Joseph Conrad scholar William Atkinson, in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, where she teaches environmental literature, animal studies, and Irish studies as Professor of English at Appalachian State University. Three of her collections of poetry have won the N.C. Poetry Society’s Brockman-Campbell award, one received the Roanoke-Chowan Poetry Prize from the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association, and another was a finalist for the Southern Independent Booksellers Association poetry award.
Kathryn Kirkpatrick’s poetry has been included in anthologies and readers, including Facing the Change: Personal Encounters with Global Warming; Animal Companions, Animal Doctors, Animal People; Don’t Leave Hungry: Fifty Years of Southern Poetry Review; Cadence of Hooves: A Celebration of Horses; Poetry from Sojourner: A Feminist Anthology; and The Carol Adams Reader.
As a literary scholar in Irish studies and the environmental humanities, Kirkpatrick has published essays on class trauma, ecofeminist poetics, and animal studies in New Hibernia Review, Eire-Ireland, Canadian Journal of Irish Studies, An Sionnach, Irish University Review and other journals. Her reviews of the work of other writers have appeared in Irish Literary Supplement, Shenandoah, Calyx: A Journal of Art and Literature by Women, ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment, and South Carolina Review.
Kathryn Kirkpatrick’s website is kathrynkirkpatrick.org