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Fishing Secrets of the Dead, Poems by Meredith Davies Hadaway

Meredith Davies Hadaway’s debut volume creates a watery world of birds and fishermen, a litany of voices, calls and noises, each examined, treasured, and embodied in the poems’ precise lyricism. The secrets this book reveals are enduring, dark, and beautiful.

Sample Poems by Meredith Davies Hadaway

“Page by page, secret by secret, this book dazzles, disarms, and gathers force. Here is art stripped of its artifice. Heartbreakingly tough, breathtakingly tender, these poems make soundless crossings over the threshold of grief.”—Nance Van Winckel

“In Fishing Secrets of the Dead, Meredith Davies Hadaway pays attention to experience by noting the dance of ‘fog and shadow’ that shifts and turns to reveal the strange familiarity of a moment. This she uses to describe the difficult and too-early death of her husband and its aftermath, which finds her trying to differentiate ‘darkness and darkness.’ These poems are so clean and spare and poignant that they contain what can only be called truth, and like truth, they provide solace but not comfort.”—Michael Collier

“Hadaway’s beautiful poems of love, memory, and mourning introduce us to a sensibility tempered by loss and tuned to the truth that grief teaches: the dead, as Hadaway movingly observes, are ‘the secret we cannot tell’—except when we tell that secret in poems as mysteriously purified and shapely as these wistful elegies for a husband too soon dead and wise meditations on the irrecoverable possibilities of the past. Fishing Secrets of the Dead marks the debut of a haunting lyrical voice.”—Sandra M. Gilbert

“The reader will discover soon enough the author’s late husband stands as the elegized subject in a wonderful romance that is powerful poem after poem. But the sudden lyric hymns to rivers, birds, fish come with additional impact and the openness of clearing skies after storm. Sometimes as terse as Emily Dickinson, Hadaway is certainly the voice of Maryland’s Eastern Shore in these poems that are as sweet and true as a sea-cleaned shell shining in the hand. Moreover, they resonate with time’s big story. Fishing Secrets of the Dead is an auspicious, welcome poem.”—Dave Smith

Meredith Davies Hadaway’s poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Absinthe Literary Review, Ellipsis, Isotope, Lilliput Review, MARGIE, Currents, the Delmarva Quarterly, and the Milestone. Her reviews have appeared in Poetry International. She lives in Chestertown, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, where she serves as the Vice President for College Relations at Washington College. She is also a musician who has performed in the U.S. and Ireland. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in writing from Vermont College.

ISBN 193233999X, 80 pages

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Also by Meredith Davies Hadaway:

The River is a Reason

At the Narrows