Say What | The Tulip Flame

tulip flameI love that I follow some really cool people in the literary community on social media. Not only do I get to follow these peoples’ work, but I get the scoop on what they’re reading. Poets reading other poets and pushing the literature–it’s a beautiful thing!

A few weeks ago, I read a review of Chloe Honum’s book, The Tulip Flame and was intrigued. More than one person has said of this woman’s collection, that you can’t just read one poem. The work compels you to continue until the last page is turned. So dutifully, I purchased a copy.

I found my friends’ statements to be true.

Honum’s poems are singular in their simplicity. Linguistically, her style is deceptively minimalist ; The Tulip Flame deals with loss, grief,  self-image, and art with such astounding nuance and honesty that this reader felt the poems burgeoning, demanding not just attention, but meditation. So I read slowly, quietly over each piece, sometimes reading a poem two or three times before moving on. There is nothing contrived whatsoever about these pieces; they lay everything bare and name sadnesses in a sort of periphery–like when you you’re sitting in a dark room and can only make out the shape of an object by looking slightly away from it.

Please read this book. I’m not sure I’ve read a poet with such a quiet, desperate need to speak her healing.



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