Under a Future Sky is a gathering of generations, a performance with ghosts anchored in Brynn Saito’s journey with her father to the desert prison where, over eighty years ago, her grandparents met and made a life.
Born of a personal ache, an unquenchable desire to animate the shadow archive, Saito’s journey unfolds in lyric correspondences and epistolary poems that sing with rage, confusion, and, ultimately, love. In these works, descendants of wartime incarceration exchange dreams, mothers become water goddesses, and a modern daughter haunts future ruins. To enter this book is to enter the slipstream of nonlinear time, where mystical inclinations, yellow cedars, and sisterhood make a balm for trauma’s scars. Altogether, the work enacts a dialogue between the past and the present; the radical ancestor and the future child; and the desert prison and the family garden, where Saito’s father diligently gathers stones.
Casebound: $21.00 / 9781636281070
“The stark beauty and physicality of the Arizona desert, where Saito’s paternal grandparents were imprisoned during World War II, are ever-present in her latest book. Using the framework of letters to and from her father and other family members, she honors the ‘riverstream of ancestors’ and, in a celebration of ghosts, recovers stones for the living. Saito’s fearless entry into her ‘gate of memory’ is a radical guide for us all to make meaning from the past.”
—Amy Uyematsu, author of Basic Vocabulary
“Brynn Saito writes with a rare, inimitable grace in her most personal and politically engaged book to date. The epistolary poems for family and the impact of internment and inheritance are imagined with music and wisdom. I feel more alive after these poems and her reminder, ‘Beautiful prayer animal, rise to the occasion of your living.’ Under a Future Sky is a masterpiece.”
—Lee Herrick, author of Scar and Flower
“Through gorgeous epistles to family, friends, and even a dragonfly, Brynn Saito quests through the Western landscape and questions the past. She searches the animal of the body, each cell an intergenerational archive, and finds ‘who you’ve been can no longer carry you. / That is the miracle.’ Lyrically lush and deeply wise, this book is both an intimate portrait and a summoning, a chance to hunt memory and recover history, still burning, still stone.”
—Traci Brimhall, author of Come the Slumberless to the Land of Nod