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Larvae of the Nearest Star: Poems by Catherine W. Carter

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LSU Press continues to be the premier poetry publisher of the South, only publishing the very best Southern poets. The 49 poems here are as eclectic as their titles, from “Two Seater” to “The Rapture,” but they are always surprising in their apt juxtapositions and swift movement from hilarity to seriousness. “I’ve been an admirer of Catherine Carter’s poetry for over a decade, but this collection achieves a whole new level with its craft, vision, and urgency. Larvae of the Nearest Stars makes clear that she is one of our country’s finest poets, and her book deserves a place on the same shelf as collections by Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry. 'I will not cease telling,' Carter tells us in the final poem. May it long be so.” -- Ron Rash. “Catherine Carter’s poems are Big Dipper fishhooks. Enter unguarded a subject such as a hornets' nest, an outhouse, a Sunday afternoon, and then―something else happens, or becomes visible. ‘This is us,’ it turns out, ‘mortal minerals in the brief era of stars, this is it.’” -- Sarah Lindsay. The poet, Catherine W. Carter, teaches at Western Carolina University and dedicates this, her third collection, to the memory of Katherine Stripling Byer (1944-2017), that university’s most distinguished poet of the last generation and North Carolina’s first female Poet Laureate.

Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2019. 62 pages. Trade paperback.