Jenny George's debut showcases an astonishing poetic talent, a new voice that is intensely focused, patient, and empathic. The Dream of Reason explores the paradoxical relationships between humans and the animals we imagine, keep, fear, and consume. Titled after Goya's grotesque bestiary, George's own dreamscape is populated by purring moths, bats that crawl like goblins, and livestock--especially pigs, whose spirit and slaughter inform a central series of portraits. The poems invite moments of stark realism into a spacious, lucid realm just outside of time--finding revelation in stillness, intimacy in violence, and vision in language that lifts from the dark.
From "Threshold Gods"
I saw a bat in a dream and then later that week
I saw a real bat, crawling on its elbows
across the porch like a goblin.
It was early evening. I want to ask about death.
But first I want to ask about flying.
Jenny George lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she runs a foundation for Buddhist-based social justice. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop.