Canopy: Poems (Paperback)
A long-awaited yet startlingly urgent new collection from “a contemporary master”*—a fierce, big-hearted eye on our last, tumultuous decade, and our fragile environment *Los Angeles Review of Books
Linda Gregerson’s long-awaited new collection is a tour de force, a compendium of lives touched by the radical fragility of the planet and, ultimately, the endless astonishment and paradox of being human within the larger ecosystem, “in a world where every breath I take is luck.”
From the Syrian refugee and ecological crises, to police brutality and COVID, to the Global Seed Vault buried under permafrost, the poems ask: How does consciousness relate to the individual body, the individual to the communal, the community to our environment? How do we mourn a loved one, and how do we mourn strangers?
The magnificent poems in Canopy catalogue and reckon with humanity and the natural world, mortality, rage, love, grief, and survival.
About the Author
Linda Gregerson is the author of six previous collections of poetry, most recently of Prodigal: New and Selected Poems. A former Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, Gregerson is the Caroline Walker Bynum Distinguished University Professor at the University of Michigan, where she directs the Helen Zell Writers’ Program.
A New York Times: "Editor's Choice" —
"We might ask: what kind of looking is required if we are to see accurately that beguiling blend of devastation and grace that seems, each day, to hem us in? Although such a question might prove to be, in the end, unanswerable, an answer — or, at least, the start of one — arrives in the pages of Canopy." — On The Seawall
"Linda Gregerson’s capacious, discursive new poems, often in wiry, wiley sequences, track the chaos of the last several years, cataloging, calling out, searching for connection if not consolation. The stricken environment itself cries out in her poems; Gregerson names the many inequities that have shaped the Covid pandemic ('if half/ the workers at Tyson meats come down with the virus we still/ have a plan for protecting the owners from lawsuits'). Nonetheless, this poet finds much to love about the world: 'I’m here to praise.'" — Craig Morgan Teicher, poet and critic, author of Welcome to Sonnetville, New Jersey
"Gregerson’s poems....are transcripts of a mind pushing and pulling at the structure of language, and the poet understands that structure—which is to say, the order of the words—as a way to regulate, to speed up a thought when necessary, to slow it down, or to modulate a sudden change in pitch. To make possible, in other words, a language of the mind, a feeling language that represents, with the ferocity and clarity of John Donne, the very feeling of thought, and the dance of it." — McSweeney's