Ugly Duckling Presse

20 Love Poems for 10 Months
20 Love Poems for 10 Months

Mary Austin Speaker

Poetry | $10 $8
Buy"This is vow-making without language, and in some ways, beyond that. "

Drafted in the back of a car over a period of two weeks in the wintery climes of the Rocky Mountains, the poems in 20 Love Poems for 10 Months conflate the audacity of that landscape and the outrageous moment when a relationship's thrill transitions from the terror of uncertainty to incredible endurance, when what has seemed like an impossible pinnacle reveals itself to be an entirely new territory.

Written in brief fragments that take the reader from the snow-covered continental divide to the moist, mushroom-dense forest of early summer, to the brightening shores of a bioluminescent bay, these poems aim to offer an experience as exhilarating and disorienting as the first reachings after utterance when the certainty of love has arrived in all its strangeness.

Excerpt ˇ




we crane

and go feathers 

we fold 

our forevers


to soften 

their edges

Close ˆ

About the Author

Mary Austin Speaker

Mary Austin Speaker is the author of the chapbooks In the End There Were Thousands of Cowboys, Abandoning the Firmament (Menagerie Editions 2009 and 2010), and The Bridge (Push Press 2011); a collaborative play, I Am You This Morning You Are Me Tonight, written with her husband, poet Chris Martin; and the forthcoming collection, Ceremony, winner of the 2012 Slope prize. New poems have recently appeared in epiphany, Boston Review, Boog City Reader, 20012, Iowa Review, la fovea, High Chair, Lungfull, New Orleans Review and elsewhere, and her critical work can be found in Pleiades, The Claudius App, and Painted Bride Quarterly. She works as a book designer in Iowa City, IA.