cover image Scorpio


Katy Bohinc. Miami Univ, $17 trade paper (72p) ISBN 978-1-881163-63-3

Bohinc (Dear Alain) doggedly gauges themes of place, sexual violence, astrology, and American double standards in a collection that sustains a haunting eros: “Lay my body down for you, heartbeat silence/ To eat your rage. Sleep the pain./ I watch a movie to turn the cheek. You go shopping./ Is the only way to ease loneliness to agree to everything?” The poet’s voice resonates in most poems, stripped of sonic garnishments and bolstered by an assured feminism. In “Water,” Bohinc writes, “I hate planes back on this 6:35 a.m. device/ to New York City the farthest thing/ from womb ok incubator is a word it exists but it/ is a machine with nothing to do with love.” Though the work as a whole is somewhat uneven, such poems sear in their straightforward simplicity. In “Rape,” the speaker imagines violence upon an uncontextualized rapist: “I want them lonely and scared/ As I etch tears in the corners of your eyes.” Philosophy recurs, as when Bohinc writes, “Derrida was completely right but utterly lacking in wisdom./ What is wisdom? I’ll take a stab: Did you think it was all right/ to deconstruct my heart?” With a style that alternates between lyric and colloquial, Bohinc delivers an astute, witty, feminist collection. (Oct.)