Jen McClanaghan’s poems roam across the most intimate of terrains: love, loss, and memory. They pause over the poet’s personal tragedies before turning back to the world’s larger calamities, never for long letting the one escape the shadow of the other. River Legs is nostalgic for the prelapsarian world of two-parent households, of dogs half-asleep on the front lawn, of youth and first love. But its wistfulness is tainted by the knowledge that the world is not only fallen but even now falling. Fathers die, mothers drink themselves sick, relationships fray. Meanwhile, these poems turn to the careful order of language, not to keep the world at bay but to finally allow it in.
Jen McClanaghan was educated at Antioch College, Columbia University, and Florida State University. After earning her PhD, she completed a two-year postdoc as resident scholar at The Southern Review, where she edited a special issue on Americana. Her work has appeared in numerous places including The New Yorker, Best American Poetry 2013), The Iowa Review, The Southern Review,and New England Review. Her poetry manuscript, a finalist for the Dorset Prize and the National Poetry Series, was selected by Nikky Finney for Kore’s first-book prize. She is at work on her second collection.
Titles available from Kore PressRiver Legs
The Best of Kore Press: Poetry