Patter Cover


By Douglas Kearney

Red Hen Press, Paperback, 9781597095808, 94pp.

Publication Date: March 1, 2014

For a couple struggling with infertility, conception is a war against their bodies. Blood and death attend. But when the war is won, and life stares, hungry, in the parents faces, where does that violence, anxiety, and shame go? The poems in "Patter" re-imagine miscarriages as minstrel shows, magic tricks, and comic strips; set Darth Vader against Oedipus's dad in competition for Father of the Year; and interrogate the poet's family's stint on reality TV. In this, his third collection, award-winning poet Douglas Kearney doggedly worries the line between love and hate, showing how it bleeds itself into fatherhood.

About the Author
Douglas Kearney's Patter (Red Hen Press, 2014) was a finalist for the California Book Award in Poetry. THE BLACK AUTOMATON (Fence Books, 2009) was a National Poetry Series selection. A collection of his libretti is forthcoming (Subito Press, 2015). He has received a Whiting Writer's Award and residencies/fellowships including Cave Canem and The Rauschenberg Foundation. His work has appeared in Poetry, NOCTURNES, Iowa Review, Boston Review, What I Say: Innovative Poetry by Black Writers in America, Best American Poetry, and Best American Experimental Writing. Raised in Altadena, CA, he lives with his family in Santa Clarita. He teaches at CalArts.

Sunday, Jun 15, 2014

Douglas Kearney tells NPR's Rachel Martin about the anguish of miscarriages and the tough decisions presented by in vitro fertilization � experiences that inspired his latest book, Patter. More at

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