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Inside Spiders

Inside Spiders Leslie Shinn

Winner of the 2013 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize in Poetry

These gemlike poems, deceptively complex, are revelations of the domestic and natural worlds: chiseled, unflinching, set beside a “painted paper lake/of gilded folds laid straight,/the gowned hills/on hidden feet/ late coming light.” Reminiscent of the writing of Robert Creely, Shinn’s debut conveys a life condensed—deeply felt and keenly observed.

Praise for the Book

“Vivid and particular, Leslie Shinn’s poems peer with their ‘spider eye’ into corners—a room, a family, a reflective self—and find in the shadows the telling detail Dickinson would recognize, or Ted Kooser. The angles may be acute, the details partial, miniature, yet Inside Spiders becomes a richly capacious portraiture, illuminating the actual yet at times transforming what it finds with further, haunted evocation: ‘Pendulum, diadem, / a dark bauble loose / and undulate in his sloop,’ she says of one spider in its web, while ‘two bees / tumbling in the white window’ become, with a snap, ‘live dice.’ Shinn documents the domestic in its troubles, its loves, and its daily regard, lighting ‘the heart’s dark lantern.’”—David Baker

“In Leslie Shinn’s gorgeous debut collection, what is outside of habit or home is turned brilliantly on, whether in waking to the ‘flash of a pane, dark and clean’ or encountering the ‘small, peculiar weights’ of a neighborhood grief. These poems are cut and precise and frightening.”—Kate Northrop

About the Author

Leslie Shinn received her MFA in creative writing from Warren Wilson College. She was born in Des Moines, Iowa, and lives in Philadelphia.

Original trade paperback / $15.95 / ISBN 978-0-89255-439-3 / 64 pages



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