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prayer book of the anxious, by josephine yu

ISBN: 978-1932418583

"In Josephine Yu's debut collection you'll find weeping and gnashing of teeth and profound loneliness, in words that "throb on the page like nerves." There's also a belief in transformation, and in moments that can only be called grace: the upwelling tenderness for strangers, getting stoned behind the school library; embracing a lover from behind as he washes the dishes. For Yu, "the god of despair" is "the father of the god of attention," and these poems are marvelously attentive to the shifting tides in the self as it performs its daily offices of sorrow and love." - Kim Addonizio

Yu's poems show brilliant range; they are startling and stirring, comedic and then breathtakingly brutal. This is one transcendent collection!" - Julianna Baggott

"This beautiful collection begins with a poem about lying, to which one says, "Yippee!" A poet's lies beat today's headlines hollow, and Josephine Yu has assembled here a cast of winsome, slightly off-center characters to help with all that prevarication: a lepidopterist who lives alone, a fortune teller who knows she'll never marry, saints and dreamers of every kind. So many poetry collections are monotone--not this one. A hundred voices bubble out of these pages, each one beseeching you to listen. You'd be crazy not to." - David Kirby