T H E B E S T N E W W O M E N P O E T S
for 20 years
Winner of the 2016 Perugia Press Prize
Guide to the Exhibit
by Lisa Allen Ortiz
Inspired by displays at a small natural history museum, the poems in Lisa Allen Ortiz’s collection, Guide to the Exhibit, are about what we set aside to examine and remember. The quirky, scientific lens—grimy, focused, funny, always illuminating—animates the odd and overlooked. With humility and curiosity, Ortiz is moved to learn how to see more clearly both as lover and as griever. Speaking the names of things—animals, skeletons, teeth, feathers—is a way of connecting with the complications of being alive. How does the stillness of an exhibit encourage us to be deliberate about the suppleness of love and joy? Does knowing more increase the pleasure of felt experience? This poet is paying close attention to love while death and sorrow lurk nearby. “Survival is the mutest joy,” Ortiz writes. Guide to the Exhibit looks outward and reflects, examines, links, and contradicts.
Lisa Allen Ortiz grew up in rural Mendocino County, California. She teaches creative writing to middle school students in Santa Cruz. This is her first book.
Guide to the Exhibit will be released in September 2016. To order this book or any other Perugia Press title, please visit our Web site.
Finalists: Kara Krewer, Animals in Silent Movies
Dara-Lyn Shrager, Whiskey, X-Ray, Yankee
Semi-Finalists: Daneen Bergland, The Goodbye Kit; Joanne Clarkson, The Fates; Samantha Deal, [Taxonomies / Something Opened]; Shawn Fawson, The Dogs of Reverie; Mia Ayumi Malhotra, When I See You Again, It Will Be with a Different Face; Wendy Miles, Reliquary; Megan Peak, Wasp & Nettle; Saara Myrene Raappana, You Are a House, You Are a Nail, You’re the Momentum of the Nail; Sara Rivara, Animal Bride; Caitlin Scarano, A Hierarchy of Animals; Colby Cedar Smith, A Year of Salt; Kathryn Smith, No Wings, No Fins; Camille-Yvette Welsch, The Four Ugliest Children in Christendom.
Perugia Press Prize: A prize of $1000 and publication by Perugia Press is given annually for
a first or second unpublished poetry collection by a woman. The next deadline is November 15, 2016.
Massachusetts Poetry Festival
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