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Praise for YELLOW LEAVES:
“In her poem Bequest, Alana Dagenhart poses a seemingly simple question: [W]hat do I do/ to leave good marks/on the world? As I finished reading the final page of Yellow Leaves, I felt I was holding in my hands the answer. This first collection could easily be a handbook for teaching us how—with mind, heart, and eyes fully open—to navigate loss’s inevitable landscapes and how—with courage, dignity, and grace—to move forward. Beneath the surface of Dagenhart’s stunning diction and syntax lies a depth of emotion capable of both breaking and mending the reader’s heart. What a good, good mark she has left on the world.”
Cathy Smith Bowers, author of The Abiding Image and North Carolina Poet Laureate, 2010-2012.
“In Yellow Leaves Alana Dagenhart allows memory to unseal the poet’s vision reminding us that to give form to memory one must also forget. In the broadest of straightforward, clear but not domesticated, and passionate language, these poetic narratives evoke shared common possibilities for plain spoke sincerity, unburdened by irony.
This collection boldly invites an existential kind of mystery and intimacy where answers plead to become more and more of the questions that plumb across the natural world, history, myth, identity, and geography of kin, hearth, heart, and child. Each poem deserves multiple readings if only for the sheer force of imagination or promising aftershocks of delicacy and utterance.
Yellow Leaves is ceremonial and incantational transcending a mere act of remembrance. These poets summon engagement without becoming the commemorative ground where poems often die.”
Jaki Shelton Green, North Carolina Poet Laureate Alana Dagenhart's debut collection is heartwarming, brilliant, and challenging.
About the Author
Alana Dagenhart is a poet, artist, and teacher who is trying to be a better global citizen. She likes to think about the intersection between science, art, and poetry and has been reading lately about time, light, cartography, and mythology. She is studying Latin American poetics. In her free time, she enjoys snow sports, backyard fires, and designing things. She lives in North Carolina with her husband José Rogelio Calvo in a little house with crooked doors and their dog Ela, and cats Paco & Luna. This is her first poetry collection.
From the book
A METAPHOR (OR MORE) FOR YOU
euphoria at the end of the novel, escape
of a dollar matinee, jouissance
of poetry, the melancholy
of leaving, the smell of earth, sun
after three days’ rain, the peace of clean, funk
groove, the enormity of space between wake & sleep
the color of the spectrum, indigo, the smell of a good tobacco
Degas’ ballerinas, a bass riff, the third bottle of beer, heat
in August, or fresh jalapeños, neon, nectarines
the truth of birth, three a.m. with no stars, the softness
of falling snow, the view from the blue ridge where Earth curves
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