Voice’s Daughter of a Heart Yet To Be Born

2016 • 160 pages • ISBN: 978-1566894-38-8 • $17 • Poetry
Coffee House Press

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Coffee House Press

Waldman appropriates the idea of Blake’s unborn spirit of Thel to explore artists’ and activists’ roles during the Anthropocene. Thanks to a 2013 ADA Access Improvement Grant administered by VSA Minnesota for the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, this title is also formatted for screen readers which make text accessible to the blind and visually impaired. To purchase this title for use with a screen reader please call (612) 338-0125 or email us at info@coffeehousepress.org.

“With attention to both the ancient and prophesy, Anne Waldman’s Voice’s Daughter Of A Heart Yet to Be Born is a grand listening, a discourse inside ecstatic presences, and a hermeneutics of those intermediary states just beyond ordinary knowing. As if written from a trance, this work has the texture of a new sacred text—distinctly feminist —as it speaks, as well, to our fraught contemporary moment filled with racial and gendered hatred, mass migration, penury, and global war and terror. It does this with a necessary urgency and the fresh eyes of Waldman’s sweeping intellect and an imagination/knowing that emerges from the dream space, the before space, the indeterminate call, the prescient utterances of the she who did not get to be. If your heart beats, if your hunger needs invigoration, then let Voice’s Daughter Of A Heart Yet to Be Born shift you as it did me. A truly altering experience.”
—Dawn Lundy Martin

“Coming in the wake of her vast and magnificent epic (The Iovis Trilogy: Colors in the Mechanism of Concealment), this volume brings Anne Waldman’s work into the more intimate, paradoxical folds of poetic (and prophetic) knowledge. This should not suggest that Voice’s Daughter of a Heart Yet to Be Born is a book of small things; it is anything but. Juxtaposing lyric arcana, journalism, critical fragments, visions of mythic and mystic beings, narrative, polemics, and even ekphrasis, Waldman has created a work that is simultaneously jeremiad and psalm. It is, then, both fearful and celebratory, an epic of a “time before birth.” Anne Waldman has long been willing to enter the dance of doubting, a dance intent on undoing doubt so as to bring about incipience. In this beautiful book, the labor of beginning is sung—indubitably.”
—Lyn Hejinian

From “Citadels Thel Leaves Ringing”:
We got to Mars. We circle asteroids with a strange anticipation. We go interstellar. We like the sound of wormhole. Its magic. Thel without footprint, without trace, desiccated, desolate, nothing around, nugatory. Thel who talks with worm. Thel a figment in the mind of becoming-in-life, of potential, of not-becoming-yet in-mind, just got dreamed up, a proposal is Thel’s gambit for one who would be cautious. Caution trumps curious.