Camille Guthrie transposes the pastoral themes of the medieval Unicorn Tapestries with those of modern, urban life in an ingenious reimagining of both. Amidst her flora and fauna we encounter a lookout, a boyfriend, informants, hunters, poets, and a rock star—all fresh translations of familiar figures. Here the unicorn becomes a blank figure for the beloved, knowledge, and vision. The allegory of the hunt becomes the pursuit of the elusive prey of meaning. As in The Master Thief (Subpress, 2000), Guthrie agilely uses traditional and modern poetic forms. These fearless poems invite the reader to be startled by ideas and ambushed by beauty.
Camille Guthrie’s sharp eye for lyric detail, her use of shifting connections, narrative fragments, quotations, and demarcations have produced a haunting and powerful collection of meditations. This sequence is the work of an impressive new voice in American poetry.
A captivating composition. A loving trap.
—C. D. Wright
Camille Guthrie is the author of the poetry books Articulated Lair (2013), In Captivity (2006), and The Master Thief (2000) (all Subpress books), and the chapbooks Defending Oneself (Beard of Bees, 2004) and People Feel with Their Hearts in Another Instance: Three Chapbooks (Instance Press, 2011). Born in Seattle, she has lived in Pittsburgh and Brooklyn. She holds degrees from Vassar College and from the Graduate Creative Writing Program at Brown University. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, and on web sites, including Arsenal, Art and Artists:Poems, Chicago Review, Conjunctions, No: A Journal of the Arts, the Poetry Foundation, and The White Review. She raises two children with her husband in upstate New York and teaches literature at Bennington College.
Follow Camille Guthrie on Twitter: @GuthrieCamille