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Precise, Poems by Tina Kelley

In Precise, Tina Kelley's poems are alive with joy and spiritual import, yet do not forget the heart's darker places: in their expansive scope, these poems ennoble even when they lament.

Sample Poems by Tina Kelley

"Tina Kelley writes with buoyancy, precision, and joy chastened by grief.  She has an eye for the sacred detail, an ear for the sacred note.  Her poetry is a singing cure."-- Edward Hirsch

"The poems in Precise are rich with the original music, the passion, wit, and forthrightness that distinguish the poetry of Tina Kelley's previous books. Her poems of first life, the beginnings of cognition and wonder, in Part 4 of this book are startlingly true, touching, and mysterious, filled with perceptions and moments never captured so before, and not to be missed."--Pattiann Rogers.
"What exuberant, worldly poems! With equal parts joy and humor, Kelley covers the universe, from molecular biology to such dark matter as poverty and 9-11. She has a nose for the oddball ('On the Collection of 70 Pairs of Shoes Filled with Butter Found by Hunters in Jaemtland, Sweden on October 5, 2003' is one title), finding the gamut of human behavior fascinating in its immense, inexhaustible diversity. Such is her responsive attitude toward the world, but what makes this collection so special is her writer’s gifts: a reporter’s accurate eye paired with a lively, eloquent abbreviation. The images zing: fish 'seam-ripping the river,' 'the awful white explosions from hard-boiled eggs,' the sun 'glamorous, like overhead lights on a transatlantic flight.' Precision in language is an instrument for this poet’s holy awe."--Julie Sheehan
"Precise, the title of Tina Kelley’s second book, truly captures her style, for she is ever engaged in the quest for exactitude in presenting all she sees and finding exact language for it.  She goes further in moving beyond the immediate  sense impression to wonder at the mystery that lies beyond it.  Reading these poems, I’m struck by a passionate curiosity and control. Kelley praises life in all of its fullness and leaves room for the miraculous, as well."--Grace Schulman

Tina Kelley is on the staff of Covenant House, where she is co-writing a book about homeless teenagers. She was a reporter at The New York Times for ten years, and also worked at the Seattle Times and Philadelphia Inquirer. Her first book of poems, The Gospel of Galore, (Word Poetry, 2003) won a Washington State Book Award, and she won a fraction of a Pulitzer Prize for being a part of the Times’ coverage of the September 11 attacks, writing 121 “Portraits of Grief,” short descriptions of the victims. She lives with her husband and two children in Maplewood, New Jersey.

ISBN: 978-1625490070, 106 pages

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