Madeleine Beckman’s Hyacinths from the Wreckage, her third book of poetry, is a glittering collection that embraces body and place, and the constantly changing geography of an emotional landscape. The language of these poems wrenches, arouses recognition and empathy, and, finally, sings a persuasive song with the promise of renewal. This is a book of sensual revelation, a journey through intersecting emotions of desire, strife, sorrow, and laughter. Beckman’s poems are fierce, vividly alive, and filled with passionate energy. She writes about love and loss in an original and startling way.
Madeleine Beckman is a poet, fiction, and nonfiction writer. She has received awards from among other institutions, the Poetry Society of America, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Irish Arts Council of Ireland. Her fellowships include Fundación Valparaíso (ES), Ragdale, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Tyrone Guthrie Center (IE). Her poetry collection, Dead Boyfriends, was first published by Linear Arts Press in 1998, and was reissued by Limoges Press in 2012. Her second collection, No Roadmap, No Brakes, was published in 2015 by Red Bird Chapbooks.
She is a Contributing Reviewer for the Bellevue Literary Review, and Contributing Editor for Agora, the arts journal of New York University School of Medicine. Madeleine received her B.A. and M.A. from New York University, and her M.F.A. from Fairleigh Dickinson University. She teaches at New York University School of Medicine, Division of Medical Humanities, and privately: www.writedowntown.com
Madeleine Beckman’s poems of love and loss, of journeys, destinations and departures, are written with a passionate energy that is a constant pleasure to encounter. They are tender, amusing, often moving and always vividly alive.
—James Lasdun, author of Bluestone: New and Selected Poems, and other books
Madeleine Beckman has given us a glittering collection of poems that embrace body and place. Through her eyes geography is an emotional landscape constantly changing. Beckman writes about mother and daughter relationships, young womanhood, as well as love. In Hyacinths from the Wreckage there are poems that are conversational and tell stories. Beckman’s work looks directly into our eyes. Her words touch us without hesitation.
—E. Ethelbert Miller, author of nine poetry collections and two memoirs
What a joy to read Madeleine Beckman’s poems. Beckman’s poems are fierce and original and exquisite. I sat down and read them straight through, like delicious and tantalizing desserts. She writes about love and loss in a new and startling way.
–Patty Dann, author of Mermaids and other books
In her third book, Hyacinths from the Wreckage, Madeleine Beckman translates the several overlapping languages of the heart: the loud and quiet strains of love and desire, strife and sorrow between mothers and daughters, fathers and daughters, lovers, husbands and wives, the living and the dead, the born and the unborn. In Beckman’s poems, that language becomes a song, and, like the most persuasive songs, its promise is reprise. Amid the crazy-gorgeous chaos of love known, and love lost, “after the world [has] turned upside down and inside out / as the world does over and over,” this poet’s voice gathers strength. It wrenches, it arouses recognition and empathy, and, finally, it sings.”
–Miranda Field, author of Swallow, winner of Katharine Bakeless Nason Literary Publication Award in Poetry
Hyacinths from the Wreckage celebrates wonderful parents, love with the insouciance of – I didn’t want to see you anymore / but / you were there / Hey, I’m here; the voltage of “Voltage,” the deadly tail of Scorpio/curling the n of electrician / like a lick of the tongue to become who you were meant to become from “Szymborska Says.” A book of sensual revelation.
—Terese Svoboda, author of Tin God and other books