”The curtain rises and the dream begins, starring Self, a troupe of characters. At center stage flourishes Petal, alter-ego/altar-ego, ‘self-formed being, ouroboric river,’ demi-god/dess reigning over Philip Matthews’ WITCH. ‘We are trying/to scry out/a gender’ Matthews writes of the dynamic between Speaker and Petal, and indeed, figuring out drives both the structure and the drama of WITCH, one of the most singular books I’ve read in a while. Its dream is wondrous, strange, unsettling, and deep.”
Available in both print.
Philip Matthews is a poet from eastern North Carolina whose practice roots in site-specific meditation and performance. He is the recipient of fellowships and residencies from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the Hemera Foundation, and the Wormfarm Institute, and his poems have appeared in Glass, High Chair, and Poetry Northwest, among other journals. He received his MFA Writing from Washington University in St. Louis.
“Suspended somewhere between hymnal and grimoire, this Sibylline book of pressed petals is ‘closer to the idea god has’ than a world having fallen from its filth. Demonic gristle. Spellbound repast. Matriarchal meat flung to every last pagan deacon ‘scrying a gender’ where the flesh of whales and the bones of crows preside—innocence drowned—schools of fossilized faggot angels washed ashore.”
“Poetry is always at the front of the conversation about the chaos and repercussions of empire. This generation has an engaging, brilliant champion in Philip Matthews, poems which will not compromise from looking into the violence monotheism has wielded, and continues to swing. The faggot and the witch are true friends, well known to their persecutors. ‘And a heat-seeking missile rushed down upon their heads.’ I love this book, and it is indispensable!”
—CAConrad, author of While Standing in Line for Death
Friends of This Book:
Christine Baugh Mitchell
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