Lyn Lifshin

Lyn Lifshin is quite possibly one of the most well-known small press poets in the small press world. Lyn Lifshin's poetry appears in almost every literary and poetry magazine, from American Scholar, Christian Science Monitor and Yankee to Ms., Rolling Stone and Ploughshares. She has edited 4 anthologies of women's writing including TANGLED VINES (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich) now in its second enlarged edition and chosen by Ms., magazine as one of the 60 best books of the year. Other anthologies she edited include ARIADNE'S THREAD and LIPS UNSEALED. "The No More Apologizing, The No More Little Laughing Blues," included in her new book, BEFORE IT'S LIGHT from Black Sparrow Press, has been called "among the most impressive documents the women's poetry movement has produced," by Alicia Ostriker. "Writing Mint Leaves at Yaddo," a prose piece was selected as one of the best pieces of writing about writing by Writer's Digest and Story magazine.

The award-winning documentary film, "Lyn Lifshin: Not Made of Glass," was called "an extraordinary profile of a unique feminist," by Booklist and Mary McCarthy declared, "for it's passionate defense of poetry and the written word...should be required viewing in every school in America." Her work has been included in virtually every major anthology of recent writing by women including, recently, DICK FOR A DAY, UNSETTLING AMERICA, LEGACIES, MOTHER SONGS, HER FACE IN THE MIRROR, POETS AT WORK, NEW TO NORTH AMERICA, THE HOLOCAUST, IDENTITY LESSONS, COLD COMFORT, Lifshin's more recent work from Black Sparrow, has been called "a wonderful work...you can not escape the emotion that falls from these poems" by (Articulate Contemporary Art Review.)

"The most published poet in the world today, Lifshin shows here (in COLD COMFORT) what many literary magazine editors have known for decades: she's a poet of substance, range and invention." (Small Press Review) Other recent books by Lifshin include BLUE TATTOO, MARILYN MONROE, and NOT MADE OF GLASS. Writers as diverse as Robert Frost, Ken Kesey, Richard Eberhart, and Ed Sanders have praised her work. Her intense poems reflect a range of emotions and subjects and touch readers because they suddenly realize that feelings they previously thought to be theirs alone are shared. Winner of many awards including a Bread Loaf Fellowship, The Jack Kerouac Award and New York State Caps Grant, she gives readings, talks and workshops, often based on the books she has edited or exhibits in museums, around the country and has been poet in residence at many colleges, libraries and centers.

"Here she is! Might as well stop fighting it. Lifshin is not going to go away. For men, she's sexy. For women she's an archetype of gutsy independence. As a poet, she's nobody but herself. Frightening prolific and utterly intense. One of a kind." –San Francisco Review of Books

Lyn has a new book out called Before It's Light published by BLACK SPARROW PRESS, 24 Tenth Street, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, Phone (707) 579-4011 ) Fax (707) 579-0567, web: WWW.BLACKSPARROWPRESS.COM EMAIL:BOOKS@BLACKSPARROWPRESS.COM

Lyn Lifshin has been a supporter of Kitty Litter Press since our first issue! Thank you to Lyn for her supportiveness of the small press.


they're kicking us
out like dying plants.
A woman in red
silk is singing.

Her skirt's
17 colors. White roses,
reds, oranges, turquoise.
She shakes a tambourine.

"They're taking our
jobs" the bosses don't
want us, we're like
chicken too old to

eat. Unemployment's
all we got, makes
no difference now

(Published in Joey and the Black Boots issue 28)

Last Updated:
December 27, 2000