The Exquisite Buoyancies
Author: Ashley Chambers
Publisher: New Michigan Press (2021)
"In Chambers' remarkable debut the cracked, emphatic word works to join-via staccato rhythms slowed only by 'feralsigh' or caesura-imagination's reign to the unruly machinations of the 'body-body.' In a series of urgent addresses, Chambers' Dickinsonesque syntax stresses and sizzles. Instead of a Master we have Honey, we have Baby, we have Little, and we have Light. The Exquisite Buoyancies is a book of jumbling, tumbling doubling and becoming that suggests echo as tether to lament. Chambers' poems are creepy, freaky, lustfull love Songs sung into cosmic darkness."
"Anguish can be a kind of joy. Here, in various constellations of heightened language, lyric crooning, ethereal & felt, bodily things, meaning emerges and recedes and emerges again; part incantation and lament, part a sort of flailing, circling ecstasy. This poetics shows us that as we would play with a child, so too we can play with language, even, maybe especially, the language of our hardest moments, when our soul is floundering about: 'like Look / thus named Light / like Linnet who laughs laborious in warblelow delight—'. This is a beautiful book."
"Tucked within every page of The Exquisite Buoyancies is a door. And if you go through it: the impossible glow of the interior will lead you to the charnel grounds where lamentation-celebrations hum through this long night. These poems trace the echoes that slip in and out of the range of the visible page. The result, somehow, is that the reader becomes haunted by radiant light. Ashley Chambers has created a remarkable collection."