The poems in Start Again were written during the covid pandemic and speak of solitude and isolation. The “Monastery” poems are about inward containment and self-reflection. Yet these poems also reach outward, in the experience of being a grandmother and once again entering the magical world of childhood. And they extend even further, into the wider socio-political realms, crossing borders, entering social unrest. Sometimes they use the mythic and archetypical, as if to scree the future. Sometimes they leap back into memory. Most often, they help locate the poetic self—and the reader—in a present that is both ephemeral and vivid.
from this tender portion
of what I call my world
Saturn and Jupiter
while in reality
456 million miles
with you driving
in the passenger’s seat.
Shadow on the Minotaur is a magical, gem of a book about immigration, the legacy of war, and the healing power of cake and strangers. The perfect read for our time. Miriam Sagan is a national treasure.
—Ariel Gore, author of We Were Witches
Whether writing about land and earth “forgotten/like a rusted key” or love that arrives as “a kind of completion/of arrival”, Sagan’s poems speak to the essence of every corner they touch. They ask the rare daring questionand what’s left unsaid adds reverberating power to her lines. The personal echoes the world’s concerns in surprising, stunning ways—and the earth holds all of it in its imaginary borders. Her poems yield secrets we all need to hear. Indeed, Sagan’s poems are gifts, “hidden within the ordinary/…a flicker/of the ineffable.” —Renée Gregorio, author of Snow Falling on Snow
Beasts is a book about time—time passing, time cycling, time fossilizing, time writing itself on the human imagination. Such a scope might crumble in a lesser poet’s hands, but Sagan’s touch is dependably deft and fresh. Here are poems woven of high and low, shadow and light, visible and invisible, human and other-than. Tuned to the resonant universe, they touch us deeply.
—Anne Valley-Fox, author of Nightfall