Cover Art: David J. Carol
Cover & Interior Design: Alban Fisher
October 15, 2017, ISBN 978-1-936919-55-0
"Vital reading for the #MeToo movement" — San Francisco Chronicle
One of Luna Luna Magazine's "Best Books of 2017"
Long Listed for Jacar Press's Julie Suk Award
"[A] fierce new collection ... It would be easy to call these poems brave, tough, and angry but fairer to say that Melnick has gone beyond to a cool, critical assessment of moments that define women's lives." Library Journal
"In Landscape with Sex and Violence, Melnick writes in part to show rape culture as unambiguous, to reveal misogyny’s normalization as absurd, and to defy those who ask about a victim’s 'role in the incident.' But she mines complexity by grounding these poems in the survivor’s mental strategies... Melnick represents two related dimensions of rape culture: that it is a constant feature of the world in which one lives, and that it changes the way one sees that world." Boston Review
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 and serves on the Executive Board of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts. Born in Indianapolis, she grew up in Los Angeles and currently lives in Brooklyn.
Landscape with Sex and Violence by Lynn Melnick (Digital)
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from Landscape with Stucco and Dandelion
Slumped against the sunlit stucco
I fail to keep my wits about me in a choke of triggers.
I down this dandelion poison because the promise
pitches a floral danger I could live inside.
I didn’t emerge well-trained into this savage vista
because all the houseplants were succulent, and,
while anyone could witness rot writ all over my blighted arrangement,
no one stepped in.
About Landscape with Sex and Violence
The poems in Landscape with Sex and Violence explore what it means to exist within a rape culture so entrenched that it can’t be separated from the physical landscapes in which it enacts itself. Lyrically complex and startling—yet forthright and unflinching— these poems address rape, abortion, sex work, and other subjects frequently omitted from male-dominated literary traditions, without forsaking the pleasures of being embodied, or the value of personal freedom, of moonlight, and of hope. Throughout, the topography and mythology of California, as well as the uses and failures of language itself, are players in what it means to be a woman, a sexual being, and a trauma survivor in contemporary America.
Reviews and Interviews
What To Read When Everyone Is Talking About Rape. A list of astonishing books that offer the richness and strength of women up at The Rumpus.
Unapologetically Stepping In: Lynn Melnick's Landscape with Sex and Violence by Rosebud Ben-Oni up at Kenyon Online