books

FLOUNDERS (Essay Press, 2016) Free & downloadable!

Classical beauty depends on symmetry, and our love for symmetry is organic and essential to our survival as individuals and as a species, reproductively (signaling health in a mate) and otherwise. In this work, I engage with notions of form and beauty that I, as an artist and a social being, have inherited and tacitly acknowledge or actively work against. Now, to return full circle to consistency, I leave off with another excerpt, but from an earlier work—

“Nothing to do but let the form of things take over.”

AN EXCERPT FRO1DentzGLcover1-3b386aefb3M EP 62

“Just sitting on my wrist feeling stupid feeling blue the sky white across a band of sunlight no gauze the trees making v’s with their arms ~ want to look at the paper now. there’ll be a story about egypt. the people are free but the media blitz makes it controlled. free, controlled. when the snow clears i can see cars on roads didn’t know existed. keep eating clementines. they’re so tiny and tasty. the tree shaves against the window. clouds white hair.”

Read Koh Xin Tian’s interview with me about FLOUNDERS at Plougshares‘ blog here

Reviewed by Cody Stetzel in Glass: A Journal of Poetry

 

__________________________________________________________

 door of thin skins (CavanKerry Press, 2013)

A hybrid of poetry, prose, and visual elements, door of thin skins is a tale that unfolds in a psychotherapist’s and a state prosecutor’s office and the mind of the poet regarding it all–

dentzdoor of thin skins is a perfect title for Shira Dentz’ latest work. In this fever dream of a book, Dentz’s language is like a spirit who can pass through the scrims of time and perspective, but not unscathed. These poems are the toll. She sings what fails to kill us. —Cornelius Eady

door of thin skins tracks the misuse of power in a patient/doctor relationship in shattering detail. A patient is cut off from her body and the doctor imposes his. Her senses have dispersed as if to escape the troubled site. In these poems, the experiences that tear the mind and the mind’s language must be recollected in language, which becomes a reenactment of the wounding. What the poet must do, and does, is let language be torn apart so that the senses (sense) may re-collect in beauty, in the body of the poem. —Eleni Sikelianos

Here is David as a 21-year-old confused girl in boyish clothes and Goliath as a golden-credentialed 60-year-old psychotherapist in orthopedic shoes who jeopardizes his career when he sexually crosses the line with his young patient, then continually questions the reality of her perceptions. Shira Dentz’s brilliant poetic amalgam of circumstance and the mind’s second-guessing, door of thin skins presents a contemporary David and Goliath tale that unfolds in a psychotherapist’s office, a state prosecutor’s office, and the crystalline mind of the poet regarding it all. Poetry itself becomes the slingshot in this face-off. The poet’s clever innovation of an edgy and oddball brand of avant-garde song-and-response tells this tale through a mix of thought, feeling, fact, history, and personal history and a riveting pastiche of rhythmical poetry, visual poetry and prose poetry. Dentz triumphs in her dazzling and fractured narrative; door of thin skins startles and astounds.
—Molly Peacock

Shira Dentz’s door of thin skins is not only an intimate narrative of seduction and abuse, but a tour de force of assemblage. Each gallery-worthy page is meticulously arranged, prose overlain with lyric sequences, visual space with visual density. From every angle, door of thin skins is a chilling and exquisite document.
—Karen Brennan

You can buy the book at Amazon here

Or buy it at from the publisher, CavanKerry Press

The book’s distributor is University Press of New England (UPNE)

Read an interview with me about the book by Nin Andrews here

Read an interview with me about the book by Pepper Luboff on OmniVerse at Omnidawn Publishing  here

Eileen Tabios, the editor of Galatea Resurrects, blogs about door of thin skins here

Read a review at NewPages here

Read a review by Brenda Sieczkowski in Tarpaulin Sky here

Read a review by Sandy Florian in HTML Giant here

Read a review by Kay Cosgrove in Green Mountain Review here

Read a review by Nicole Sheets in Diagram New Michigan Press here

Read a review by Jane L. Carman in American Book Review, Sex Writing, edited by Cris Mazza here

Read a review by Ann Fisher-Wirth in Rattle  here

Read a review by Nicole Walker in The Rumpus here

Reviewed by Megan Burns in Rain Taxi

In Jill Magi’s imagined interdisciplinary course on violence and nonviolence

Reviewed by Eileen Tabios in Galatea Resurrects

Reviewed by Sima Rabinowitz in Galatea Resurrects

Reviewed by Michael McLane in Cutbank

Reviewed by Danielle Cadenza Deulen in Georgia Review

Reviewed by Aviya Kushner in Salamander

Reviewed in Chronogram‘s annual poetry roundup in its June 2014 issue here

Short-listed for Utah’s 13 Bytes Magazine Poetry Book Award

Reviewed by Kristina Marie Darling in American Literary Review

Reviewed by Marthe Reed in Denver Quarterly

Reviewed by Kathline Carr in Grab the Lapels

Reviewed by Holly Welker in Fourth Genre, Spring 2016

door of thin skins is also available for purchase at bookstores including:

Prairie Lights Bookstore, Iowa City, IA

Bookstore 1 Sarasota, FL

Harvard Bookstore, Boston, MA

Grolier Poetry Bookshop, Boston, MA

King’s English Bookstore, Salt Lake City, UT

Northshire Bookstore, Saratoga Springs, NY

Market Block Bookstore, Troy, NY

Watch a book trailer for door of thin skins here

__________________________________________________________

black seeds on a white dish (Shearsman Books), 2010

black seeds on a white dish was nominated for the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award  2011 from PEN’s American Center, and was featured in Poets & Writers’ sixth annual feature on debut poetry books (Jan./Feb. issue).

The poems in black seeds on a white dish spring from the search for what is generated and discovered when loss and desire occupy the same space. But lamentation is not the primary focus—by destabilizing everything in its reach, loss disables rigidity. These poems shift widely in form and tone, and seeds invoke the creative germ that spurs the metamorphoses occupying them: “Nothing to do but let the form of things take over.” Shapes themselves, including punctuation, become a language throughout.

“Paul Cézanne once quietly avowed ‘I will astonish Paris with an apple.’ And now I may, with quite an equal confidence, announce that Shira Dentz will astonish us all with the ‘the curve of a melon,’ ‘a sunray diagonal’ and ‘pumpkin seeds.’ Which is to say that here is a book to unstill all the still life images resting in our hearts. Shira Dentz is the most powerfully delicate poet I know.” — Don Revell

More information and to buy the book at Shearsman Books

Or you can buy the book at Amazon

Reviews:

Read an interview with me about the book with Stacy Kidd at The Rumpus here.

Read a review by John Bloomberg-Rissman in Galatea Resurrects (May 10, 2012)

Reviewed by Celia Bland in Boston Review (Nov./Dec. 2011)

Read a review by Valerie Wetlaufer at Drunken Boat here

Read a review by Ann van Buren at The Rumpus here

Read a review by Cindy Hochman at Coldfront here

Reviewed by Holly Welker in The Colorado Review (Fall 2011)

Reviewed by Kristina Marie Darling in Pleiades (Summer 2011)

Read a poem excerpted from the book at Poetry Daily here

Read a poem excerpted from the book at Verse Daily here

Read a review by Erin Bertram at Rain Taxi here

Read a review by Jenny Gropp Hess at Tarpaulin Sky here

Read a review by Joseph P. Wood at Gently Read Literature here

Read a review by Sima Rabinowitz at New Pages here

__________________________________________________________

Leaf Weather (Tilt Press, 2009 and reissued in 2nd edition by Shearsman Books, April 2012)

Imagine desire as a boscage, heady with its scents, untamed, infinite in its ability to sex and seed. This is the terrain Shira Dentz paints in her passionate Leaf Weather, a luminous canvas upon which each variation of color, each nuanced line, brings us ever closer to the garden of earthly delights. Like Emerson, Dentz pays homage to the sacred wood wherein songs are “always new, like time itself, or like love.”
—D. A. Powell

Veering–often within a single poem, often within a single line–from self lacerating anger to desperation, from mordant satire of the confessional mode to stunned (and stunning) autobiography, from irreverence to a state of fearful silence, Leaf Weather is a “chapbook” in no diminutive sense of the term. In “peeling/away the sun,” Shira Dentz unlooses equal parts verbal anxiety, formal adventure, and emotional reckoning. It’s one thing to write poems; it’s
quite another to live, as Dentz does, in the marrow of one’s words.
—Mark Levine

What I admire most about Shira Dentz’s poetry is the sometimes wacky, sometimes heart-wrenching precision of her descriptions: “my bubby is a black pump,” for example, or “the sky tinfoil” or “fog / a close cousin to the spider web.” Always at work is a surprising fusion of self-deprecating humor with vulnerable, self-revealing yearning — “want to make/ suction cups out of the bluegreenyellow air” — and a revelatory insight into the quirky essences of people and things.
—Jacqueline Osherow

Reviews:

Review by Valerie Wetlaufer at Tarpaulin Sky

Review by Noah Eli Gordon at Rain Taxi

Review by Kirsten Jorgensen at Diagram

Buy chapbook at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, & Shearsman Books

 


 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *