Kate Gale Received the Red Mountain Editor’s Award for ECHO LIGHT

In Echo Light, Kate Gale has created a poetry that, though often set in scenes from everyday of life in contemporary Los Angeles,instead stealthily occupies dimensions of the fabulous—by accretions of image, implication, and epiphany, inhabiting spaces that are mythic, terrifying, and transformational. The terse, plain language of these poems belies their magical passagesinto the mysterious: a magus grandfather demands stories that “writhe like snakes,” a couple views the welter of an unmade world in the gap of the Grand Canyon, and, in the silhouette light of her LA, Gale’s lovers exchange groans, their skins, even genders, “erupting out of the earth like the breath of gods.” For the Eros here is a chthonic one, despite the urban settings of the book. Edgy, imaginative, and compellingly erotic, Echo Light is a book in the tradition of Merwin’s The Lice, Dvorak’s opera Rusalka. Kate Gale is a ghost, inked with water, who walks the night and dances on the bed of the River Los Angeles.

— Garrett Hongo, author of Coral Road

The poems in Kate Gale’s Echo Light do what poems should do — they give wings to darkness, shadows and bruises. We find ourselves lost in cornfields and then saved in a desert, a city, unsuspected places. Gale crafts poems that are “curiously powerful” and offer us “salvation from boredom.” The stories, the speakers weave myths of intoxication and sensuality, reminding us of “words you aren’t saying.” They roam from earth and snow to sun, stars and sky. Echo Light “has invented the world” of poetry that we yearn for — a world full of imagination, music and flight.

— Lory Bedikian, author of The Book Of Lamenting


Published in: on December 13, 2013 at 12:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

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