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ISBN: 978-1-62557-912-6
Categories Poetry

After the Fox

Publication Date: September 2014


“Perhaps collaboration alone can offer us that glimpse into intimacy that reveals that the heart’s dearest intricacy relies on various forms of opposition. As with a fugue played by two violins, these poems-alternating in voice, though each prefiguring the theme the other develops-some notes can only be heard in the realm opposing voices create between themselves, making music there in the very midst of the excluded middle. Such music is erotic, not simply because love is its agonizing question, but more deeply, because the world of these poems can flourish only in this intermingling. It is a privilege to glimpse what these two poets see: a city so infused by ardor it seems a lover itself, and Nocturnal wandering allegorically through a city that never sleeps, asking of both her questions. Most moving is the way in which the poems mimic love’s own strange, moral questioning-one that seeks to draw the line that separates self from other, and in doing so, always makes blurry that very line. So of the two voices here, as they cannot help but merge one into the other, and just as inevitably, as they drift again apart. Part of the gift is in seeing not the other, but seeing through the other, a world available no other way, a world where the sun is always shadowless, a world where the fox has always just fled. The gift is also knowing-as the two voices sing against each other and so learn themselves-that no vision is eternal even as it sings of what concerns us all endlessly: love and its ongoing aftermath.”

-Dan Beachy-Quick, author of Circle’s Apprentice

Often I thought of these poems as postcards loitering ‘in the middle of some serious secret’: Caught, as they are, in the between-space created by the call & response of two: where two once (and always) met (and meet) forever and never. The cosmic and human version. After the Fox offers correspondence, valentine-slippages, which detail loss and longing with the great delicacy.”

-Selah Saterstrom, author of The Meat and Spirit Plan

After the Fox considers and confronts the fissures between seeing and saying. Written as a collaborative epistolary, Travis Cebula and Sarah Suzor have set up an apparatus where what is stumbled upon while chasing after is remembered by two gazes, from multiple (and multiplying) perspectives. Here, call and response leads to pronouns manipulated by derive, disaster, diversion and disruption: ‘let’s talk about the things that haunt us. / In other words, / let’s talk about consequences.’ These are poems to teach us how to see a fox in an other; to teach us how to say fox to the other.”

-Michelle Taransky, author of Sorry Was in the Woods

About the Authors

Travis Cebula

Travis Cebula lives in Colorado with his wife and trusty dogs, where he writes, edits, photographs and teaches creative writing. He is the author of six full-length collections of poetry, including Dangerous Things to Please a Girl, a sequence of Parisian poetry, and After the Fox, a collaboration with Sarah Suzor, available now from Black Lawrence Press. He is also a member of the writing faculty at Left Bank Writers Retreat in Paris, France, a Pavel Srut Fellow, a finalist, an honorable mention, several rejections and generally tries to be a nice guy—which offers him a few excuses. On most days, you can find him somewhere between the margins. On some days, you can’t.

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Sarah Suzor

Sarah Suzor's full-length collection of poetry, The Principle Agent, won the 2010 Hudson Prize and was published by Black Lawrence Press in 2011. She also has a forthcoming collaboration After the Fox, which is co-authored with Travis Cebula and will be available from Black Lawrence Press in 2014. Her reviews and interviews can be found in Tarpaulin Sky and Rain Taxi, and she has recently guest blogged for the Best American Poetry series. Suzor’s poetry has been published widely, as well as anthologized, translated and nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She lives in Venice, California where she is a founding editor for Highway 101 Press, a correspondent for Omnidawn’s online magazine OmniVerse, and a guest lecturer for the Left Bank Writers Retreat in Paris.

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