The Sea Comes Back / Lila Dunlap
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"In absolutely limpid prosody Lila Dunlap presents her readers with household tales and deities...These are poems of specific interiorities, domestic and psychic, sage old Gaston Bachelard lives deep in their forêt noir where subtle Anima stealthily tutors stern Animus...Dunlap's beautifully contained lines, ever immediate and intimate ask us again and again, 'Who will help me speak? / Who will listen? / While I work things out?' ('November,' section 19). We, her readers, are willing, and, we pray, able, given this immense accomplishment when THE SEA COMES BACK."—Thomas Meyer
"'Are you who I thought you were?' A curious, lyrical 'I' slips through every poem in Lila Dunlap's THE SEA COMES BACK, an 'I' who subjects her own substance to every element and condition, every species of experience: to 'rose water' and 'the dry flame,' to 'medieval streets' and the 'Boreal Carnival,' to language as a way of life, a way to love. 'I am the Page of Swords' one page declares. 'I am a monk' another. And in every poem a 'thou' also offers himself to her delicate, forthright observations. Each poem has its lover or other. Read Dunlap with care. She is both powerful and vulnerable, and so are you, her reader, 'Because you're always being watched. / By yourself. And you are God. / And so am I.'"—Billie Chernicoff
"For all the formal concerns, deft word play, and wide learning in these poems, there is always someone right there, talking to us. Sometimes in plain sight, sometimes teasing from lush undergrowth, but there's always a human presence we want to hear, someone we can answer. The voice is always there."—Robert Kelly