She Who Loves Her Father

(Dancing Girl Press, 2012)

available from Dancing Girl Press

A national contest finalist, She Who Loves Her Father (Dancing Girl Press, 2012) follows the afterlife of Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, while examining her love life, the power-play between siblings, and the burial rituals of her people–the art of preservation in tombs, crypts, vaults, and jars. Sphinxes, the Nile, pyramids, and Isis all make their appearance in this chapbook of poetry.

“To read Wiseman’s collection is to live inside an echo, a series of glances that won’t let you go. Wiseman evokes a landscape of attentive and intimate arrivals. These revealing poems ask us to consider why we drift and how we recognize the anchor in each other.”

- Julia Cohen, author of The History of a Lake Never Drowns

“At the heart of Laura Madeline Wiseman’s She Who Loves Her Father is the desire for human connection in all its forms—mental, emotional, sexual, physical. Nowhere is this longing more evident than in the poignant “An Email from the Living,” in which a parent writes to a child: “you didn’t respond so/ I must have the wrong address.” It is this need, often unmet, that drives the narrators of Wiseman’s poems in this winding, often wistful collection.”

- Leah Browning, author of Making Love to the Same Man for Fifteen Years

“She Who Loves Her Father is poetic archaeology, a careful search for ‘that thing // so unheard of, the source of the Nile / or the answer the sphinx longs for.’ Laura Madeline Wiseman’s poems find Eve (without Adam) making tea in a kitchen, Isis in the shape of a housecat, and sphinxes ‘nestled among the trees’ who ‘lope toward homes made of rock.’ Wiseman’s poems are cryptic in the etymological sense of crypts—they are odes to both containers and the things contained: family and daughter, stomach and food, womb and fetus. In the operation of these poems, sutures both bind and burst, bandages protect and consume. Screams turn into whispers and a dead language comes back to life in this book of riddles, where opposites swap places: ‘I want it to be yesterday. Then, I can mourn properly, twist it inside my mind to see how it was to me now. But I’ve got to get gone first.’

- James Cihlar, author of Undoing

Table of Contents

Watch recent readings of individual poems as listed in She Who Loves Her Father‘s Table of Contents. Read an excerpt of the chapbook in Extract(s).