Los Angeles Independent Publishing

New Poems

Red Hen Press, a Los Angeles independent publisher founded by Kate Gale, is the place for new poems, new fiction, and lesbian fiction/lesbian books.

Los Angeles Independent Publishing

New Poems

Red Hen Press, a Los Angeles independent publisher founded by Kate Gale, is the place for new poems, new fiction, and lesbian fiction/lesbian books.

Peggy Shumaker

Peggy Shumaker

Author's Website

Peggy Shumaker was born in La Mesa, California, and grew up in Tucson, Arizona. She earned her BA in English and MFA in creative writing from the University of Arizona. Shumaker was writer-in-residence for the Arizona Commission on the Arts, working with prison inmates, honors students, gang members, deaf adults, teen parents, little kids, library patrons, and elderly folks. She has given readings in art galleries, a governor's mansion, a clearing in the woods, an abandoned bank, on reservations, in libraries, at a gold dredge, under the hoodoos at Bryce Canyon, on a riverboat, and at many bookstores, community centers, and universities.

Peggy Shumaker's newest book of poems is Toucan Nest. Red Hen Press will release it in 2013. Red Hen Press also published Gnawed Bones, a meditation on mortality, and Blaze, a book of Shumaker's poems and Kesler Woodward's paintings. University of Nebraska Press brought out Just Breathe Normally in 2007, a book of brief lyric nonfiction. Her previous books include Underground Rivers (Red Hen Press 2002), Wings Moist from the Other World (University of Pittsburgh Press 1994), The Circle of Totems (University of Pittsburgh Press 1988), Braided River (Limner Press 1993), and Esperanza's Hair (University of Alabama Press 1985). Her poems have been published in Russia, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, England, and throughout the United States. Her nonfiction has appeared in Short Takes: Brief Encounters with Contemporary Nonfiction (Norton 2005), A Road of Her Own (Fulcrum 2002), Under Northern Lights (University of Washington Press, 2000), A Year in Place (University of Utah Press 2001), Prairie Schooner and Ascent.

Shumaker is founding editor of Boreal Books, an imprint of Red Hen Press, which publishes literature and fine art from Alaska. www.borealbooks.org.

Shumaker won a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and several awards for teaching. She served as poet-in-residence at the Stadler Center for Poetry at Bucknell University and as president of the Board of Directors of the Associated Writing Programs. Professor emerita from University of Alaska Fairbanks, Shumaker was chair of the English department and director of the MFA program in creative writing. She currently teaches in the Low-Residency Rainier Writing Workshop. Peggy Shumaker and her husband, Joe Usibelli, live in Fairbanks, Alaska, and travel widely.

Please visit her website at www.peggyshumaker.com.

Los Angeles Independent Publishing

New Poems

Red Hen Press, a Los Angeles independent publisher founded by Kate Gale, is the place for new poems, new fiction, and lesbian fiction/lesbian books.

Books Available:

Blaze

Blaze

Peggy Shumaker
2005-11-01
$29.95 TP
Shop: IndieBound, Barnes & Noble

Description:

Savoring Alaskan landscapes by way of birch trees has become Kes Woodward’s trademark. This collection brings together thirty years of his birch portraits and forest close-ups. Over those same thirty years, poet Peggy Shumaker has traveled inner landscapes via images drawn from two deserts—the Sonoran and the Subarctic. Her poems embody the harsh beauty of heat and cold, the force of true extremes. Wounded trees, marked paths, slashes of color. Bursts of passions, licks of flame. The sensual spirits of two imaginations at work fuel this volume.


Gnawed Bones

Gnawed Bones

Peggy Shumaker
2010-04-15
$19.95 Tradepaper
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Description:

From wildfire and war to bleached reefs and human frailty, Peggy Shumaker's new poems meditate on mortality. Her poems speak with elegaic force for lost languages, lost ancestors, lost ways of being. This work sharpens the edges of our perception, drawing on the inner life, on secrets that keep us alive. With language as lyrical as the natural world, the poems in Gnawed Bones nourish us.


Cairn: New & Selected

Cairn: New & Selected

Peggy Shumaker
2018-05-08
$28.95 Casebound
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Description:

Chosen with care, this volume represents forty years of poems and prose by Peggy Shumaker. Her distinctive cadences give voice to the landscapes and people of Alaska and Arizona. This work leads us deep into what remains unresolved, savoring mysteries of heart, mind, and soul. Matters of life and death, these poems embody exuberance and struggle and generosity.

"Shumaker uses words like an artist uses paint. Color, meaning, innuendo, and exclamation mingle, creating new colors, new nuances, new ways of seeing familiar objects. And her juxtapositions . . . are extraordinary."

—Libbie Martin, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner

"Shumaker writes without blame, but with utter clarity and precision and story-telling skill about places on earth and our place among them—Alaska, Hawaii, the saguaro-studded desert—and about foxes, deer, swallows, who co-inhabit with us . . . about the father who wanted to fly, the mother who wanted to die. . . . Whatever Shumaker touches is thick with life, death, and the blessing of her words."

—Alicia Ostriker, author of The Book of Seventy, winner of the Jewish National Book Award


Underground Rivers

Underground Rivers

Peggy Shumaker
2002-03-01
$11.95 TP
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Description:

"With rare insight, clarity, and grace, Peggy Shumaker charts both the minutiae of miniature lives and the grand and cosmic movements affecting earth's more imposing denizens. She tracks the profound and subtle dislocations or illuminations of self inspired by the closest regard of our natural world. This volume brims with the gifts and losses, struggles and triumphs that the poet gleans from nature, and which both instruct and sustain us all. Bearing an exquisite beauty and purity, these poems soar."

-- Maurya Simon, author of Days of Awe and The Golden Labyrinth

"I doubt that I can praise a poet more highly."

-- David Lee


Toucan Nest

Toucan Nest

Peggy Shumaker
2013-03-01
$17.95 Tradepaper
Shop: IndieBound, Barnes & Noble

Description:

What happens when we enter unfamiliar realms, when we open ourselves to the unknown? Sometimes that not-knowing makes art possible. In Toucan Nest, the eighth book by Alaska State Writer Laureate Peggy Shumaker, her first vivid encounters with the rainforests of Costa Rica--with its basilisk lizards, bats, and bromeliads, its crocodiles, sloths, and strangler figs--refresh and renew our world in a work of startlingly beautiful mindfulness and imagination.

Praise for Toucan Nest:

"This is a book of burnished, lapidary attention. Its poems - vibrant with seeing, quickened with sound-work, subtled by insight - peel open landscapes both outer and inner. The costs of our human presence and extractions are in these pages, but also the radiant return of human awareness. Toucan Nest is a unique account of encounter, imaginative inquiry, and expansion."

-- Jane Hirshfield, author of After and Given Sugar, Given Salt

"Shumaker's vivid Toucan Nest is about learning to see - Costa Rica serving as the textbook. Between the parentheses of arrival and departure, the pages burst with lessons - rich, beautiful, and sometimes terrifying. For us, looking over her shoulder, it is education by proxy. So iridescent is Shumaker's language, we are there, floating downriver with the crocodiles, watching panicky iguanas hustling from a fire, the basilisk lizard "zipping / zigzag on hind legs," a flash of green and ruby eyes, and oh, did you hear it? the love cry of the jaguar and the cry of the quetzal whose morning song brings the whole blessed world to life. A dazzle of a book."

-- Alice Friman, author of Vinculum, The Book of the Rotten Daughter, and Inverted Fire


Los Angeles Independent Publishing

New Poems

Red Hen Press, a Los Angeles independent publisher founded by Kate Gale, is the place for new poems, new fiction, and lesbian fiction/lesbian books.