A Conjoined Book: Aftermath : Become Tree, Become Bird
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Continuing the lyric investigations of her first two books, Karla Kelsey’s A Conjoined Book hinges together two new volumes—Aftermath and Become Tree, Become Bird—to create a meditation on the nature of aboutness. Unfolding after an unnamed ecological and emotional fracture, Aftermath’s phrases and imagery layer, the “I” of the poems imagines herself at times into a “she,” a landscape of rift dividing the self from the self as factual moments of languaged perception weave into remembered fictions. The second book, Become Tree, Become Bird grafts the Brothers Grimm’s The Juniper Tree onto the body of Aftermath, naming fracture’s loss and reworking what has splintered into a variation of the fairy tale. Throughout A Conjoined Book, Kelsey’s condensed imagery, shifting points of view, and interweaving formal structures set the spaces between lyric and narrative a-shimmer.