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Sharp Blue Search of Flame (Made in Michigan Writers)

Sharp Blue Search of Flame (Made in Michigan Writers)

Current price: $17.99
Publication Date: April 4th, 2016
Wayne State University Press
Special Order - Subject to Availability


Stirring, atmospheric poems that journey through memories of growing up in India, and the myth, death, loss, and rebirth that surrounds that experience.

Sharp Blue Search of Flame is an exploration in poetry of a complex network of nuanced journeys into a variety of worlds. The searingly rich poems reflect Zilka Joseph's own history of living in Eastern and Western cultures, as well as the influences of her Jewish Indian roots. Joseph's free verse and forms shift scenes from the real to the imagined landscapes of the mind, and search for fulfillment and solace amidst the terrifying beauty and chaos of the human condition.

Joseph's poems, while dark and brooding in subject matter--bride burnings and infanticide in her native country, the loss of Eden, mourning for a beloved mother--offer a tactile insight into life in India and the United States. Through a flurry of sounds and smells, the reader learns an interpretation of the history of the sari, witnesses the horror of attacks on women, and wrestles with death, whether it be that of an elephant, an extinct frog, honey bees, humans, or goddesses. Her poems dig deep and aspire for something beyond. Colored by fire, blood, ash, and rain, these poems present images of great joy and deep loss in a complex harmony.

Sharp Blue Search of Flame embraces worlds within worlds and worlds between worlds, which is not only intrinsic to the fabric of the poems but to the life of the poet as well. Readers of poetry will savor this sensory collection.

About the Author

Zilka Joseph teaches creative writing and is an independent editor and manuscript coach. Her chapbooks, Lands I Live In and What Dread, were nominated for a PEN America and a Pushcart award, respectively. She was awarded a Zell Fellowship, a Hopwood Prize, and the Elsie Choi Lee Scholarship (Center for the Education of Women) from the University of Michigan.