Thursday, August 22, 2019

Poetry Recommendations | Poetry Magazine and Choking Back the Devil by Donna Lynch

Poetry Magazine July/August 2019

I recently subscribed to Poetry Magazine. Eleven times a year I will receive a book sized collection of poetry.

The current volume (July/August) showcases Global Indian English poetry, and I absolutely loved it. The voices and the themes were so varied, and they were amazing.

"The poets included herein represent neither cohesion nor diversity, in fact there is nothing represented in these pages except exemplary poems from people with complicated relationships to the words global, Indian, and English either in combination or separately."

I'm looking forward to reading many more volumes of Poetry Magazine in the future.


Choking Back the Devil by Donna Lynch

Choking Back the Devil by Donna Lynch is an invocation, an ancient invitation that summons the darkness within and channels those lonely spirits looking for a host. It's a collection that lives in the realm of ghosts and family curses, witchcraft and urban legends, and if you're brave enough to peek behind the veil, the hauntings that permeate these pages will break seals and open doorways, cut throats and shatter mirrors.

You see, these poems are small drownings, all those subtle suffocations that live in that place between our ribs that swells with panic, incubates fear. Lynch shows her readers that sometimes our shadow selves--our secrets--are our sharpest weapons, the knives that rip through flesh, suture pacts with demons, cut deals with entities looking for more than a homecoming, something better, more intimate than family.

It's about the masks we wear and the reflections we choose not to look at, and what's most terrifying about the spells is these incantations show that we are the possessed, that we are our greatest monster, and if we look out of the corner of our eyes, sometimes--if we've damned ourselves enough--we can catch a glimpse of our own burnings, what monstrosities and mockeries we're to become.

So cross yourselves and say your prayers. Because in this world, you are the witch and the hunter, the girl and the wolf.

If you've been on the fence at all about trying horror poetry, Choking Back the Devil is a great place to start.

This was my first time to read Donna Lynch, and it definitely won't be my last. I loved the poems in this collection, and I highly recommend Choking Back the Devil as a collection to try.



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  1. Every year I tell myself I should read more poetry. I like the sound of this collection. Maybe I'll check it out this fall and give it a try. :)

  2. I don't know that I really enjoy poetry. I was okay with it in college, but it's not something I gravitate toward. I am glad you enjoyed this one though.

  3. I never read poetry, I'm such a heathen. Although horror poetry seems like it could be pretty freaky! :)

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