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Holy Moly Carry Me: Poems by Erika Meitner

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Erika Meitner directs the MFA and undergraduate creative writing programs at Virginia Tech. This is her fifth poetry collection. It won the 2018 National Jewish Book Award in poetry and was a finalist for the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award in poetry. She is a first generation American. Her father is from Israel, and her mother was born in a refugee camp in Germany for survivors of Hitler’s death camps. She and her two sons, one African-American and the other white, are the only Jewish family in an Evangelical neighborhood, and these narrative poems take readers there and into the Appalachian countryside beyond. No kidding! One of these poems is titled, “Dollar General.” “In her graceful fifth collection, Meitner (Copia) displays a sense of urgency  informed by parenthood in this strange and particularly turbulent American moment.” ―Publishers Weekly. “Meitner has created a keen social record of, and commentary on, our persistent human atrocities, but she also admirably transcends the dire in a search for salvation.”―Booklist. “This is a book that really is dealing with raising kids in difficult environments and also kind of facing down the epidemic of gun violence in this country ― which makes it sound like it might be kind of a depressing book. But what really impressed me about it is how beautiful and tender it is. It's really just a live wire. She's a Jew in Appalachia raising an African-American adopted son. She is and isn't at home. She's kind of meditating on these things but she does so in this very incantatory, almost prayer-like way.” ―Tess Taylor. “In this stunning, exact, and haunting book Holy Moly Carry Me, Meitner’s strong signature voice is on full display, but with a complex empathy for the violent, messed-up world. These are powerful poems that wonder, ache, fear, question, delve into history, and somehow never stop praising the human capacity for survival.” ―Ada Limón.

Rochester, New York: BOA Editions, 2018.  108 pages. A 7” X 9” trade paperback.