Dowry Meat by Heather Knox

5.5″ x 8.5″ | 110 pages | ISBN: 978-0692398494

Dowry Meat
by Heather Knox

If you were a city, I said, I’d like to know
your poor neighborhoods, your inner parts.

Read your graffiti. Drink your tap water.
Feel your smog and dirt stick to my sweat.

Hear your orchestra of sirens and gunshots.
I’d know which of your streets to walk.

If you were a city, I’d expect to be robbed.

– excerpt from “Traveler” published in decomP

Heather Knox is a teaching artist, editor and poet. Though prone to wandering, she currently calls the Midwest home. She holds a BA in English from the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire and an MFA in Poetry from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals, including Columbia Poetry Review, [PANK], decomP magazinE, and Word Riot.

Reviews for Dowry Meat:

“Heather Knox’s Dowry Meat is a gorgeous, tough-as-nails debut that arrives on your doorstep hungry and full of dark news. There’s damage here, and obsession, and more haunted beauty in the wreckage of just about everything—relationships, apartment clutter, rough sex, the body, and of course the just-post apocalypse—than you or I could hope to find on our own. These are poems that remind us not that life is hard—that old news—but that down there in the gravel and broken glass is where the truth-worth-hearing lies, and maybe the life worth living. If you were a city, Knox tells us, unflinching as always, I’d… read your graffiti. Drink your tap water./Feel your smog and dirt stick to my sweat… If you were a city, I’d expect to be robbed.

Jon Loomis
Author of Vanitas Motel (winner of the FIELD prize) & The Pleasure Principle

Dowry Meat’s apocalyptic fever dream myth-making bleeds into what we might call the poetry of witness or the tradition of the confessional, except that these lines throb with lived experience and a body isn’t necessarily a confession. Heather Knox’s poems are beautifully wrought and beautifully raw.”

Dora Malech
Author of Shore Ordered Ocean & Say So

“Heather Knox’s debut collection is a lyric wreath made of purulent ribbon and the most inviting of thorns. Tansy and tokophobia, lachrymosity and lavage are braided together in this double collection, which marries a sci-fi Western narrative to a lyric sequence. Both elapse in an impossible location made of opposites—futuristic nostalgia, or erotic displeasure—otherwise known as the universe in which we (attempt to) live.”

Joyelle McSweeney
Author of The Necropastoral: Poetry, Media, Occults & Salamandrine: 8 Gothics

“Heather Knox’s book Dowry Meat is a notstory story. A thing that begins where it shouldn’t, a woman beginning darkly instead of as light. If I told you that after reading this I did not construct an animatronic dinosaur in my back yard, that would be a lie. I spent days breaking up bits of China to use as her teeth. And that’s it, isn’t it? Finding that déjà vu book that feels like the thing you should have written yourself, but didn’t out of fear. So for weeks afterward you try to make something, anything, that can compare. I am so sorry, Heather. But thank you for this book, the creaking of its robot limbs still keeps me awake at night.”

Heather Bell
Author of A Horse Made of Fire & Nothing Unrequited Here

Poems from Dowry Meat:

Two Poems @ [PANK]
Two Poems @ Word Riot
Poem @ FreezeRay Poetry

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