Paper Banners

Jane Miller

A herald of desire, suffering, mortality, and the mission of poetry itself, Jane Miller’s Paper Banners “say[s] the cosmos / isn’t hostile. / Yet strangles a dove / with one hand.” Against this angst, Miller steps outside of history to contemplate voices of love, aging, and artmaking. Many poems are addressed to family members, friends, and young poets, or pay homage to familiar figures taken by time or tragedy, including Virginia Woolf, Osip Mandelstam, and the Song Dynasty poet Li Qingzhao. In clear, short lines, these poems harken to ancient banderoles, or pennants, which announced rallying cries on the lances of knights and mottoes on the flags of ships. Here, Miller’s Paper Banners is made of images of the American Southwest and scrutinizes its political and physical landscape. Like skywriting streamed in white smoke, this collection bears its message on the wind, its words addressed to anyone. As Miller catalogues the intimate experiences that make up a life—friendships, loves, dreams, our human connection to the environment—Paper Banners becomes a hope that “what will survive of us is love.”

ISBN: 9781556596735

Format: Paperback

About the Author

Jane Miller has written twelve books, most recently Who Is Trixie the Trasher? and Other Questions, and including Working Time: Essays on Poetry, Culture, and Travel. She has performed her creative work and lectured on literature and the fine arts at universities, colleges, libraries, community centers, and public arts venues for over thirty years. She is the recipient of a Wallace Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, the Western States Book Award, and the Audre …

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“Excellent . . . Miller is able to go inside her subjects and draw readers with her. That experience makes this collection one for all libraries.”—Diane Scharper, Publishers Weekly, STARRED review