Landscape with Bloodfeud (Juniper Prize for Poetry) (Paperback)

Landscape with Bloodfeud (Juniper Prize for Poetry) By Wendy Barnes Cover Image
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Scarred by nuclear smokestacks, oil wells, and surging floodwaters, and haunted by the legacies of slavery, racism, and French rule, the Louisiana of Landscape with Bloodfeud is disenchanted but still exerts an undeniable pull. Reckoning with displacement, ancestral guilt, and centuries of human and environmental exploitation, Wendy Barnes dissects the state’s turbulent past—as a microcosm of colonial oppression, westward expansion, and the birth of global capitalism. With an expat’s detachment, our Louisiana-born speaker contemplates her fraught relationship with her home culture and her white working-class roots, raising questions about complicity and shame, as history “bleeds us all for its tax, some for more, / digging down into every wet wound, / digging down among the taproots, under old folks’ / marble tombs or unmarked graves.”

About the Author

WENDY BARNES iscurrently artist in residence at the University of Central Oklahoma. A finalist for the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award, her creative and critical work has appeared in NarrativestorySouth, Painted Bride QuarterlySpoon River Poetry ReviewSlice, and Coldfront, among other outlets. She lives in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Praise For…

“In Landscape with Bloodfeud there are at least two ways to go. There is a path to some kind of justice. and there is a path to the end of mercy. Barnes’s poetry admits homesickness driven by shame, guilt, love, and most of all, a search for some kind of truth to be found in the place the speaker damns and praises, loves and left. In tortuously rich poems, this book records a private coming to terms. ‘But surely I exaggerate this shame / just to give myself a pass— / do I think I’m virtuous because I claim / these past misdeeds?’”—Dara Wier, author of You Good Thing

“There is an eloquent and brave kind of cartography here. These poems have in them a burgeoning, a flood of language, image, culture, and a stark interrogation of the American self that make them essential. ‘Welcome / to the parish of fenced-in / vernacular.’ Landscape with Bloodfeud is an exquisitely crafted and mesmerizing debut collection.”—Sean Nevin, author Oblivio Gate
Landscape with Bloodfeud is remarkable for its paradoxical strengths: its descriptive power and delicacy, its weave of linguistic panache with rhetorical nonchalance, the sheer scale of the conception and the line-by-line finesse. Remarkable already, even before the reader takes in that the whole bloody saga takes place on a tightrope of conscience.”—Robert Carnevale, co-translator of Apollo in the Grass: Selected Poems
Product Details
ISBN: 9781625346414
ISBN-10: 1625346417
Publisher: University of Massachusetts Press
Publication Date: April 29th, 2022
Pages: 104
Language: English
Series: Juniper Prize for Poetry