And Luckier

And LuckierAnd Luckier
Accents Publishing, 978-1-936628-56-8
Buy from the author here, $16 + $2 shipping (note: if you’d like the book autographed, please send me an email after you order):

Buy from Accents Publishing
Order from an independent bookstore; find on Indiebound

Listen to a poem from the book

With Luck, We All Become Persons of a Certain Age: an interview with Leatha Kendrick, an Interview with Melva Priddy on the Poetry Matters blog.

Read some poems from the book:
From Still: The Journal
Appalachian Review: Poem Without a Gazelle
Appalachian Review: At the Gate
Appalachian Review: The Warp
Appalachian Review: Poem for a Daughter III

Watch a reading from the Accents Book Club:

What others have to say:
“Kendrick’s powerful fifth collection springs from a mature poet’s reckoning: with the family she was given and the family she has made, with the struggle to answer her calling as an artist, with the dangers and diminishments of age, and with her privileged place in a suffering world. And Luckier opens with a dispassionate question: ‘who might it serve that you / would grow downhearted?’ The poems that follow take us through many voices, subjects, and perspectives, bringing us at last to this hard-won counsel: ‘So much suffering. We cannot uncause it / But we can set ourselves to mend, / … I will pick up the rubble. / I will carry one stone at a time.'”—George Ella Lyon

“As mass and spin in perfect balance keep Earth’s creatures from being crushed by our own weight or flying off into airless space, so these poems maintain perfect tension between exquisite craft and beguiling imagination. Every turn of the page brings fresh delight of music and image, astonishing depth of vision. From the home fires of the hearth to the heart of the helix, Kendrick’s poems remind us of what we forgot we knew about love and death, those timeless themes of poetry.”—Sherry Chandler

“Some poets wear their hard-earned wisdom as lightly as earth holds the most delicate of its blooms—with roots fierce and stubborn, with stems “tough enough to wait out the drought / that comes before the bloom.” I love Leatha Kendrick’s new collection, And Luckier, for its graceful, ferocious holding. “What will your seeing make?” Kendrick asks in her opening poem. Hers has made these poems of witness and of healing, and we, her readers, are all the luckier for them.”—Pauletta Hansel

“In her new collection And Luckier, poet Leatha Kendrick offers us an unflinching and holistic look at our world. Her poems are full of humanity, honestly set in that place where it is “impossible to separate / misery and joy—the living edge of mystery.” Kendrick’s work is complex and masterfully figurative, always allowing for two things to be said at once, two things to be true at once.”—Kathleen Driskell

“Leatha Kendrick’s latest collection, And Luckier, features the marvelous “Poem Without a Gazelle.” The sonnet appears to be about waiting in a drab hospital room for test results, that is, until the speaker laments that a gazelle was supposed to leap into the poem. Instead, a woman in “cheerful printed scrubs’ arrives (like a gazelle leaping in) with test results to say, “you’re doing alright, at least for your age.” This splendid turn epitomizes the dilemmas that And Luckier explores. Here’s a book about the adjustment to age, the imperfections in the world, loss and what it makes of a person, and the poet as an “absentee Nana,” her grandchild living far away. What does it mean, in a climate changed world, to pass the “stiff diorama” of degraded farmland to a scattered family? Kendrick valiantly copes with not having all the answers in And Luckier. Her combination of melancholy and gratitude provides all we can’t know of life and its endings with a majestic understanding.”—Molly Peacock

From And Luckier

Your Fear
Now ask yourself–who might it serve that you
would grow downhearted? What do you choose
to see? What will your seeing make? The “news”
selected and relayed, mirrored and soon
a billion times its weight, weighs on the mind
that seeks it out. What is the new? The breath
just drawn, the thought not yet enfleshed, the kind
word being said, the stars that press unseen
overhead. “It is the unforeseen
upon which,” Poe said, “we must calculate
most largely.” Impossible to separate
misery and joy–the living edge of mystery.
Time’s unfolding, dauntless, holds you dear.
The universe has no need of your fear.

Watch the first public reading from the book, on Carnegie From Your Couch: