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67 pp
6 x 9.25
January 2003

Emerging Voices

Misery Islands,
by January Gill O’Neil

Spooky Action at a Distance,
by Howard Levy

My Painted Warriors,
by Peggy Penn

Red Canoe: Love In Its Making, by Joan Cusack Handler

door of thin skins,
by Shira Dentz

The One Fifteen to Penn Station, by Kevin Carey

Where the Dead Are,
by Wanda S. Praisner

Darkening the Grass, by Michael Miller

Neighborhood Register,
by Marcus Jackson

Night Sessions,
by David S. Cho

by January Gill O'Neil

The Second Night of the Spirit, by Bhisham Bherwani

by Joseph O. Legaspi

WE AREN'T WHO WE ARE and this world isn't either,
by Christine Korfhage

Through a Gate of Trees,
by Susan Jackson

Against Which,
by Ross Gay

The Silence of Men,
by Richard Jeffrey Newman

The Dishelved Bed,
by Andrea Carter Brown

The Singers I Prefer,
by Christian Barter

The Fork Without Hunger,
by Laurie Lamon

An Imperfect Lover,
Poems and watercolors by Georgianna Orsini

Soft Box,
by Celia Bland

by Eloise Bruce

by Catherine Doty

Silk Elegy,
by Sondra Gash

The Palace of Ashes,
by Sherry Fairchok

Eyelevel: Fifty Histories,
by Christopher Matthews

by Joan Cusack Handler

So Close, by Peggy Penn

Snakeskin Stilettos,
by Moyra Donaldson

Grub, by Martin Mooney

Kazimierz Square,
by Karen Chase

A Day This Lit,
by Howard Levy

CavanKerry Press LTD.
CavanKerry Press

The Palace of Ashes

by Sherry Fairchok

Foreword by Thomas Lux

The Palace of AshesThere are many subjects in this book I have never read about in poems before—young girls, for example, asked by their riding instructor to help her breed a mare. The poet’s job was to guide the stallion’s penis into the “gray suede pucker of her sex.” There are other poems about horses and birds and birding . . . but they all circle back to, include in some way, the weight, the emotional and psychological atmosphere of place . . . so often, in these poems, place is metaphor. And that explains their tremendous resonance, their sadness as well as their joy . . . you will remember these towns because you are from these towns . . . these poems will help you see them . . . or mourn them, as you need. That’s part of poetry’s job. This poet has done her job brilliantly. —Thomas Lux

Out of palaces of ash, Fairchok discovers substantial fire. Out of coal-veined Pennsylvania, she elicits heat and warmth. Out of transformative witnessing stitched with hunger, she has us experience horses and birds, life and nature, through sheer astonishment . . . Such lusciousness. Such longing. A fire burns deeply in these poems. —Patrick Lawler

Sherry Fairchok’s steady gaze is faithful to the numinous truth of things, and her voice so restrained that the power of feeling within it strikes deep and lasts. Each poem is a world, a story so in love with the details—the sound of human voices, the taste of food, the look of dusty lilacs—that I am taken in utterly. —Marie Howe


Sherry FairchokSHERRY FAIRCHOK was born in Scranton in 1962. She spent the early part of her childhood in Taylor, PA, a coal-mining town, in which her family has lived since the 1880s, and where her grandfather, great-uncles, and great –grandfather worked as miners. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University and an M.F. A. degree from Sarah Lawrence college. Her chapbook, A Stone that Burns, won the Ledge 1999 Chapbook Award. Her poems have appeared in the Southern Review, Ploughshares, DoubleTake, and Poetry Northwest, among other journals. She works as an information technology editor and lives in Mount Vernon, NY.


A White Lampshade

Its crinkled plastic cover,
fussy and timid
as a rain bonnet, a shower cap,
made me laugh, humiliated again
by my family’s bad taste,
because I did not understand then
that to be born a woman in a mining town
was to inherit the unending war
against coal dust that men dug up all day
and wore home at night, like a farmer’s tan.

In spite of bathhouses at the breaker,
in spite of the bowl and pitcher on the front porch,
in spite of the claw-footed tub in the kitchen,
with the permanent black smudge
painted along its bottom by the water leaking out,
coal dust imbedded itself into every
chip and crack of their daily lives.