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In this gorgeous third collection, Sandra Lim investigates desire, sexuality, and dream with sinewy intelligence and a startling freshness.
Truthful, sensuous, and intellectually relentless, the poems in The Curious Thing are compelling meditations on love, art making, solitude, female fate, and both the mundane and serious principles of life. Sandra Lim’s poetry displays stinging wit and a tough-minded approach to her own experiences: She speaks with Jean Rhys about beauty, encounters the dark loneliness that can exist inside a relationship, and discovers a coiled anger on a hot summer day. An extended poem sequence slyly revolves the meanings of finding oneself astray in midlife. A steely strength courses through the volume’s myriad discoveries—Lim’s lucidity and tenderness form a striking complement to her remarkable metaphors and the emotional clamor of her material.
Animated by a sense of reckoning and a piercing inwardness, these anti-sentimental poems nevertheless celebrate the passionate and empathetic subjective life.
Sandra Lim was born in Seoul, South Korea. She is the author of three poetry collections, The Curious Thing, Loveliest Grotesque and The Wilderness, chosen by Louise Glück for the Barnard Women Poets Prize. She has received many honors for her work, including the Levis Reading Prize, an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and fellowships from MacDowell and the Getty Foundation. She is a Guggenheim Fellow in poetry and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.