Winner of the 2017 Editors Choice Award from Red Mountain Press. Denise Low’s SHADOW LIGHT shifts poetics into natural laws of optics. Words are lenses to sort lineages—Lenape (Delaware), European, Cherokee—into harmony. This beautiful assemblage uses inter-textual dialogues, silences, and explosions of images to celebrate an unlikely personal and historical survival


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Poems include: “Sun Dog over Satanta,” “Santa Fe Novena,” “Sky of Cranes,” “Eskimo Curlew,” “Coast Winter Abstract,” “Quivera Way,” “Tailing Piles,” “Smell of Water.”

“The natural elements are honored and reclaimed in all their vital glory in Denise Low’s SHADOW LIGHT. Water, land, wind, and language rise up and dazzle. Low splinters syntax and line to signal presence, absence, spirit, and light. These are also elegiac poems for a father, sister, and grandparents, and gloss the history and resilience of the Lenape, Cherokee, Cheyenne, and Kiowa people. Low translates nature into human song and back again. This is a riveting and urgent collection by an accomplished poet.”—Hadara Bar-Nadav

“Denise Low’s SHADOW LIGHT extends her poetics to the realm of natural magic: Lyric embedded with Story. History embedded with Myth. English challenged with Native languages. Imagery enriched with Sound. Pop Culture meshed with ritual Culture. The built Environment genuflecting to the natural Environment. SHADOW LIGHT is masterful poetry.”—Jeanetta Calhoun Mish

“Denise Low’s SHADOW LIGHT deals with sight, appearances, and apparitions. Shades slide through layers of history, layers of earth, sidewise in a single line, ‘peripheral twilight / black-and-white lexicon / flicker flit freeze.’ Low conveys liminal perceptions by leaving enough unsaid. In these painterly poems, physical features emanate tones and patterns. SHADOW LIGHT is brilliant—don’t miss it.”—Joseph Harrington

SHADOW LIGHT is a sweep of polarities—life / death, past / present, upheaval / peace. This spot-on writing casts variegated light on our world—flycatchers, curlew, little people, opossum.”—Diane Glancy

c. 2018 Denise Low