The three sequences of Groundwork comprise a sophisticated reworking of European myth on the order of Yeats’s The Tower. The first is situated by an. Editor’s Note (Jan 13, ): Amanda Jernigan’s book Groundwork, from which these poems were excerpted, was named one of the top five. Amanda Jernigan’s debut poetry collection forwards a critique of contemporary aesthetics and knowledge production. From archaeological excavations in.

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Amanda Jernigan writes poems that make your brain fizz with their rhetorical flourish, the chops and changes of her lines, their dense, active language, their allusiveness, and their brawny intelligence. She writes out of what she calls a scholarly aesthetic, a formal and referential rootedness in tradition and wide-reading.


Besides poems, she writes essays and plays. With her partner, the artist John Haney, she has produced limited-edition books and broadsides under the imprint Daubers Press.

Her work has been published and performed in Canada, the United States, and Germany, and groundworj featured in the online archive of the Poetry Foundation. The photos are by John Haney.

The time, if time it was, would ripen in its own sweet time. One thought of dawn. One felt that things were shaping up, somehow, that it was getting on.

Upon the waters broke in waves on waves unbreaking and night fell, unveiling in its wake one perfect whitened rib of geoundwork. I slept, and while I slept I dreamed, a breaking wave, a flowering tree, and all of one accord I seemed. I woke, and you divided me. Adam and Eve and Pinchme went down to the river to bathe. Adam and Eve were drowned. Who do you think was saved?


Between her pills, his poisons, the water in which we bathe is less than pure: My pet canary, William, died. But, I am reassured, there is a factory upstream hernigan replicate the bird. Do I wake or sleep?

Interview: Amanda Jernigan (2012)

Indeed, the answer is the same. In fact, ask me, if you can guess my name. The name shall answer to the beast ………………………. All make-believe amounting to pretending to the throne, I banished Eve, and Adam, loath to go it on his own, went after.

That year the grapes fermented on the vine, the fields lay fallow. The streams, uninterrupted, flow from Eden as they always did. The apple trees, untended, go to crab. Therein lies the question: It was as we remembered. There is always something enriching to read and every now and then my morning gets a wallop. These poems reach deep. So deep that I know I am not seeing to the bottom. Refrain is going on my fridge. Thank you dg and AJ. The cadence and rhythm lulling and significant without being overly self conscious.

What I appreciate so so much about this work is the tension between the deceptive whimsy of the words and rhyme in stark contrast with the gravity of its meaning. Thanks for sharing, Amanda. Thanks for this considered and encouraging response.


I am particularly happy to hear what you say about the cadence of these poems. Wanted to clarify, briefly, about the span of time over which these poems were written. Thank you for these stunning poems.

The Malahat Review

Their rhythms bear a sense of inevitability that pierces to the heart. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. But, I am reassured, there is a factory upstream to replicate the bird in polyvinyl chloride: Adam at the Altar The name shall answer to the beast ……………………….

Poetry Daily Prose Feature: Interview with Amanda Jernigan

Soliloquy All make-believe amounting to pretending to the throne, I banished Eve, and Adam, loath to go it on his own, went after. Amanra Imagine it, Adam: January 21, at January 21, at 3: January 21, at 5: January 22, at 2: January 26, at January 17, at Leave a Reply Cancel reply.

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