Destruction Bay (Paperback)

By Lisa Chavez

West End Press, 9780931122927, 61pp.

Publication Date: January 1, 1999



Poetry. Taking their starting point from the Alaska landscape, like their author, these surprisingly intimate poems speak in the voices of murderous mothers, young prostitutes, grieving widows, desirous poets: women who confront life open-eyed and articulate. The poems dwell in the extremes; toughness and innocence, victim and victimizer, seawater and nettles. Chavez's poems are piercing and sharp as a northern winter, and always they are only a word away from devastation. (-Linda Hogan) When I was a girl/I walked along the tracks/away from this town/full of dust and rusting/hulls of cars./I thought I'd follow/those trains someday. Instead,/I let you lay me down/in your daddy's old pick-up/truck. (from Leave the Window Open at Night) Chavez's poems walk the edge between following those trains and the instead available to the women in her community.