Unapologetically sensual and forthright, Bright Stain explores desire, loss, faith, doubt, tenderness, and violence; and sex as experience, metaphor, and magnifying lens for relationships.
Bright Stain may or may not become the Sex and the City of poetry, but this knock-your-socks-off debut will likely inspire debate—perhaps controversy—as it inhabits some startling points of view, including pedophile priests’, serial killers’ and prison inmates’. Those who miss reading these breathtaking, visceral poems won’t know what their friends are raving about.
“Francesca Bell’s poems are fierce and tender, passionate, compassionate, disturbing and delightful. Wide-ranging, finely-honed, smart and surprising, Bright Stain is a compelling debut collection!”—Ellen Bass
“How deeply gratifying to see Francesca Bell’s electric, erotic, and completely ravishing debut collection, Bright Stain, at last in the world. For the past ten years she has been writing some of the most charged, subtle, and yet devastating poems in American poetry. Many of these dramatic vignettes are laced with a rare sexual candor and a whip-smart emotional intelligence. Bright Stain is one of the most darkly elegant and luminous books of recent years; it is, in all ways, truly a wonder.”—David St. John