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Distributed for CavanKerry Press

Rise Wildly

In Rise Wildly, poet and journalist Tina Kelley writes with precision, heart, and humor. Touching on matters such as marriage, child-rearing, and caregiving for her mother and her earth, Kelley’s poems betray an unabashed affection for big words and small children. As a journalist, she has heard and told hundreds of stories, and like all reporters, values facts and the psychological heft behind them. Her mind catches on shiny facts and phrases that she gathers in combinations that can surprise, delight, and inform. Both reverent and irreverent, but always aiming for accuracy and empathy, Kelley explores the darkest corners, then lifts her eyes high.

The poems in Rise Wildly touch on stories from the front row seat of Kelley’s life, especially in her role as caregiver. Written with reverence for the vicissitudes of being a mother, wife, and daughter, Rise Wildly touches on it all: birth, childhood, middle age, old age, death, and their epic combinations. Musings on fact, fiction, music, nature, and family are relayed with humor, grief, joy, and adoration.

88 pages | 6 x 9


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Category Finalist

Eric Hoffer Awards

“Throughout Rise Wildly, Kelley’s elixir of ‘Vitamin Awe’ (the apt title of one of her poems) imbues dailiness with the magic of attention. Kelley’s deceptively simple questions and instructions bring us to our senses: ‘Count how often each year you let rain fall on your face.’ Rise Wildly is both an extended love poem and a prayer of gratitude for a world that, as Kelley reminds us, is as precarious as it is precious.”

Rachel Hadas, author of Love and Dread and Poems for Camilla

“In Rise Wildly, Tina Kelley wows us with her infectious wonder of the earthly and the divine. She is the queen of the cool fact, mistress of the miraculous. We learn that there are ‘100,000 undersea mountains, only a thousand of them named’ and that ‘a baby giggles, on average, 400 times a day.’ With humor and musicality, she invites us to consider that “It didn’t have to be this way. Snowflakes could’ve been dull.” Horrible things happen. There are “dozens of blistering ways to die,” and yet here she is, reassuring us that the statue of Saint Francis will continue “presenting his heart to the light.” These are poems our times demand: reverent, awe-inspiring, and utterly holy.”

Martha Silano, author of Gravity Assist and Reckless Lovely

Table of Contents

I Wish You Had Known, When You Launched Me
Why I Cried Reading This at Liss and James’ Wedding
Planting, Nearest the Prayer
On a Record James Agee Recites from Memory
His Poems, Auden’s, Shakespeare’s, Etc.
The Brother My Parents Almost Adopted
Vitamin Awe
Adding a New Heartbeat
Getting Through the A’s in Angels: Their Names and Meanings
Watching My Father Watch His Widow
The Fetal Fawn inside the Roadkilled Deer
The 87th Easter
“I’m Having the Death I’d Always Hoped For”
The Hill Looks Steeper, the Two Maples Gone
The Dying-in-Slow-Motion, The Woman Who Taught Me to Knit
What is Metempsychosis?
Help. My Mother is Dead. I Feel Light.
All the Birds Now Silent in the Yard
The Mutual Gratitude of Fountain and Solstice
World Premier, Nocturnal Bird Migration Concert
Epithalamion for Jesus and the Springfield Community Church
Trains Running After Storms
Her Thoughts That October
How You Meet the Year is How You Spend the Year
Map, Lewiston, Idaho, June, 1933
A Dozen Secrets from God
Found, from My Daughter
“Would You Learn Your Lesson if I Made You Take Your Clothes Off?”
“See Something, Say Something”
Notes from a Survey of Home Health Aides
Looking at Saint Francis in the Desert
“Louis Wore His Beeper in His Coffin”
Deserted Trail off the Mountain Loop Highway
Monastery for the Modern Journalist
Watching All the Way Home from a Tough Interview, Seat 28A
Three Endings
Theme and Variations
Please Bring a Moon

On Successfully Becoming Invisible in My Own Home
On the Lackawaxen with Kate, 2008
The Music of Places Going on Without Us
The Menopause Doula
First Weekend Ever Home Alone
To Live: The Imperative

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