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The Requited Distance: Poems Paperback – February 8, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


“These poems soar with stunning lyric grace and yet we feel their earthly and epic gravity along the lengths of our bones. ‘The beauty of wreckage,’ Rachel Eliza Griffiths tells us, holds beauty. From wreckage and from beauty, she reinvents, revises, and rejuvenates the Icarian tale, balancing perfectly the weight of desire upon the rare edge of thinnest air. From the frayed threads of the mythic, she reweaves the familiar into the strange, the oft told into the wholly uncanny. The Requited Distance is a breathtaking performance.” ―Eric Pankey

“The myths and ancient images in Rachel Eliza Griffiths’ The Requited Distance disobey their own narratives. They wander into each other’s stories, get possessed by another’s myths and challenge the old music with their questions to the point where the labyrinth they create becomes the birth canal out of the one within which they are supposed to be captive. There is a surreal, unsettled beauty in these re-settings and these ancient dreams invade our own time with their inevitable augury.”―Ed Roberson,


“Rachel Eliza Griffiths’ concerns are wide as a church door and as deep as a well. They serve her needs and ours. Her wounds are deep, and her victories glorious. She writes in different styles and voices―sometimes in the same poem. Her ancestors are Greek choruses, oratorios, and The Supremes. Listen to her.” (Stanley Moss)

“Highly recommended.” (Yusef Komunyakaa)

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Product Details

More About the Author

Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a poet and a photographer. She received the MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and the MA in English Literature from the University of Delaware. A Cave Canem Fellow, she is the recipient of numerous fellowships and awards. Her literary and visual work has appeared in Callaloo, Indiana Review, The New York Times, Comstock Review, Crab Orchard Review, Brilliant Corners, dear camera, Hambone, Mosaic, RATTLE, Puerto Del Sol, The Poetry Society of America, and many others. She is the author of Miracle Arrhythmia (Willow Books), The Requited Distance (Sheep Meadow Press), and a forthcoming full-length collection of poetry, Mule & Pear (New Issues Poetry & Prose, Fall 2011). She was recently featured as an emerging poet in the April 2011 issue of O magazine, as part of their first-ever poetry issue. Currently, Griffiths teaches at Sarah Lawrence College and lives in New York.

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