Cover Art: Zoe Crosher
Cover & Interior Design: Alban Fischer
December 2012, ISBN 978-1-936919-12-3
In my worries I am plummeting down steps,
industrial, medieval, breezy welcome
stairs like little landings where a foot could catch.
In some nightmares my breasts are so misshapen
they are no longer mammalian, quite,
this inevitable evolution we can’t call progress.
Those mornings I wake exactly as I fell,
a little upright, on my back, static and sweaty
and always next to you. Call it relief
to find everything as it was, though one summer I fell up
and up and up and it was a good lesson
in the sham of gravity.
And once, when we found ourselves in another summer
overlooking an entire city, we thought
we couldn’t get older or higher,
though in my worries I am both, and falling.
If I Should Say I Have Hope by Lynn Melnick (Digital)
Order a Print Copy
About If I Should Say I Have Hope
One of Coldfront’s Top 40 Poetry Books, 2012
On the melancholy-go-round of these poems, there’s a swan-seat for sadness but also a tiger called Beauty and a horse called Hope.
Demandingly charming, consistently unpredictable, Melnick’s debut asks for notice at first for its language, whose glitter casts Melnick as both sophisticate and ingénue, “gleaming with what I wanted/to be.” Its surfaces place her firmly in this century, far from the transparencies of memoir, and yet, on rereading, subjects emerge—principally a Southern California adolescence in part imagined, in part misspent.
Lynn Melnick’s poems recall the raw power of Anne Sexton and read like Lynchian dreams. The voice of these poems proves consistent and potent, steeping the book in weather and worry, in impulse and flesh, sometimes in blood. . . and all demand recognition of truth, of human details we might rather deny.
—Melinda Wilson, Coldfront
About Lynn Melnick
Lynn Melnick is the author of Landscape with Sex and Violence (2017), If I Should Say I Have Hope (2012), and the co-editor of Please Excuse This Poem: 100 Poets for the Next Generation (2015). Her poetry has appeared in APR, The New Republic, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, A Public Space, and elsewhere, and she has written essays and book reviews for Boston Review, LA Review of Books, and Poetry Daily, among others. A 2017-2018 fellow at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers, she teaches poetry at the 92Y. Born in Indianapolis, she grew up in Los Angeles and currently lives in Brooklyn.