cover image Milk


Dorothea Lasky. Wave, $18 trade paper (160p) ISBN 978-1-940696-64-5

Exhibiting her typically unabashed, rhythmic, and confessional style, Lasky (Rome) revels in both shadow and light as she writes through isolation, motherhood, and loss. At its best, Lasky’s voice is hypnotically primal, resulting in inexplicable, yet palpable desire: “Do you want to soak/ The rat/ Completely/ In oil/ Before/ We eat it/ Eat it// You know you’re such a mess/ In a red dress/ For you/ I’d take it raw.“ At other times these impulses translate into enigmas (“Eat turmeric because inflammation is/ And the cells, they keep spilling/ Or really, nothing more blank than your lifeforce/ Or the promise of it”) or unrefined grievances (“You know social media/ Is bad for me/ People are too/ I am thirty-seven and still a child”). Though much of this work stems from the pain of interminable longing, Lasky reassures her readers—“I said it could be true/ That the sunny days do stick to walls/ And then enter you”—and delivers occasional bits of off-kilter humor: “When one is on the Internet/ In the middle of fear/ You can find a Mashable article/ About abandoned shopping malls.” This is an emotionally enriching collection, and Lasky’s euphonic displays of vulnerability may leave readers pleasantly dizzy. (Apr.)