Subverting received traditions, embellishing mythic figures, the lyrics of The Devil’s Fools speak to and for those wanting heaven: modern pilgrims, medieval masons; seafarer, axe murderer, alcoholic; daughter, spouse, sibling, mother; a woman on pause, a monarch of the underworld, Eve stepping out past Eden. One country bombs another, there’s mass animal slaughter during epidemic, never-ending yard work, love letters from the dead. Humans sorrow and glory, mourn and thrive, treasure the will to live—with burdock and mushroom, apple and willow, cicada, cuckoo, brontosaurus, toad. The poems represent wild and delicious creaturely delusion, deception, vigor and joy.
Mary Gilliland is the author of two award-winning poetry collections: The Ruined Walled Castle Garden (2020) and The Devil’s Fools (2022). Her poems are widely published in print and online literary journals and most recently anthologized in Rumors Secrets & Lies: Poems about Pregnancy, Abortion, & Choice; Wild Gods: The Ecstatic in Contemporary Poetry and Prose; and Nuclear Impact: Broken Atoms In Our Hands. She is a past recipient of the Stanley Kunitz Fellowship from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and a Council on the Arts Faculty Grant from Cornell University, where she created and taught seminars such as ‘Ecosystems & Ego Systems’ and ‘America Dreaming.’
Page count: 82
Trim size: 5.5 x 9 in.