Tuesday 1 January 2008



Dancing Girl Press, September 2013
$7 US plus P&P / £5 direct

Homecoming picks up on a sense of isolation in the American Midwest as well as its emphasis on the more positive attributes of family life. Thus when the father falls to injury and illness, his decline upsets the meanings of family, selfhood and home. Poems in Homecoming first appeared in Court Green, New Welsh Review, Notre Dame Review, Poetry Ireland Review, Poetry Wales, The Rialto, Sentence: A Journal of Prose Poetics, The Times Literary Supplement and The Warwick Review.

Positive reviews have appeared in Sabotage Reviews, Elsewhere and Luna Luna.

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Punch Press, June 2010
$10 US / $15 elsewhere (SOLD OUT)

Twenty poems from the series Divining for Starters, originally published in Alterran Poetry Assemblage, Cannot Exist, Damn the Caesars, Gists & Piths, Great Works, The Liberal, Painted, spoken, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry Wales, Shearsman, and Tenth Muse.

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The Son

Oystercatcher Press, September 2009
ISBN 9781905885244
£4 including UK p&p

Poetry Book Society Pamphlet Choice

Peter Riley describes The Son as "quite startling--a serious work about loss through a terrific play of imaginative resource," while the selectors of the pamphlet choice remark, "There is something too, about how time moves, or how it doesn't, in a world akin to that nightmare in which you are running and running and your legs are jelly and you are getting nowhere. The fact that the poems in this collection are either prose poems, which can shuffle on the spot, rather than move along with a sense of narrative, or catechisms which go back and forth with different responses to the same question, adds to an overall feeling of being trapped. Indeed, these poems work by accretion, so the more you read, the more powerful that feeling becomes."

Other reviews include Alan Baker on his blog, Litterbug; three at Sphinx, by Rob A. MacKenzie, Marcia Menter, and Helena Nelson; and Rupert Loydell in Shadowtrain.

The Son evokes a birthmother's consciousness through two kinds of poems: Imagined Sons, prose poems which envision the now-grown son and birthmother in a moment of contact; and Birthmother's Catechisms, in which the same question--e.g., What day is today?, How did you let him go?--recurs with changing answers. Moreover, after Al Qaeda's attacks on the US in 2001, the anniversary of the son's birth becomes complicated by the fact that both occur on September 11th.

Many of the pamphlet's poems have already been published in Barrow Street, PN Review, The Republic of Letters, and The Times Literary Supplement.

The Son comes from a book-length manuscript, Imagined Sons, presumably forthcoming. It was launched at Mr B's Emporium of Reading Delights in Bath on 26 October 2009, along with Janet Sutherland's second collection, Hangman's Acre (Shearsman).

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Leafe Press, February 2008
ISBN 9780953540198
£3.50 (UK) / $8.00 (US) (SOLD OUT)

"Technically Etter often makes use of the arresting juxtapositions of new sentence writing (in both prose and lineated forms) but counterpoints these with threaded-through continuities that generate more settled overall arguments. This is used to great effect in 'Paternal', which hints at family illness, even death, but in a way which keeps pathos firmly at bay [...]. Elsewhere this technique simply allows more space into the poem, and for the mind to savour the relationships between images as much as the images themselves [...]. Yet is an excellent introduction to Etter's work for British readers and promises much for her new books due this year and next."

"The eighteen or so poems here vary in structure, intent and layout—sometimes it seems perversely so, but Etter is a poet who knows exactly what she is doing. This isn’t in any sense an easy collection and I mean that as an endorsement. I was intrigued, impressed and ultimately bowled over by its hard-won lyricism."

--Eleanor Livingstone, Sphinx

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Subterfuge for the Unrequitable
Potes & Poets, 1998
ISBN 9780937013793
$6.00 (SOLD OUT

To “register the tongue’s torque,” Carrie Etter’s poems show great skill and a willingness to take risks, both rare things in a “first book.” This writing is simultaneously “out there” and always also immediately present (in the most literal sense of “with it”), an experience that is by turns centering and dizzying. It’s quite a ride.
Ron Silliman
Attention and compassion direct this finely chiseled work. Etter’s quick eye focuses on precise moments of change and of emergence—those crucial moments where life gets really interesting—and sculpts them into wholes with an unusually attuned ear, an ear that catches always a subtle music and often a marvelous oddity—what an agile vocabulary! These are poems that wake you up when you thought you were already awake.
Cole Swensen

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