Casualty Reports: Poems (Pitt Poetry Series) (Paperback)
Stylistically innovative, deeply moving, carefully researched, Martha Collins’s eleventh volume of poetry combines her well-known attention to social issues with the elegiac mode of her previous book. She focuses here on race, gun violence, recent wars, and, in an extended sequence, the history of coal—first as her ancestors mined it, then from its geological origins to our ecologically threatened present. Casualty Reports is both indictment and lament, a work that speaks forcefully to our troubled history and our present times.
About the Author
Martha Collins is the author of ten previous collections of poetry, most recently Because What Else Could I Do, which won the Poetry Society of America’s William Carlos Williams Award. Previous volumes include Blue Front, White Papers, Admit One: An American Scrapbook, and the paired volumes Day unto Day and Night unto Night. She has also cotranslated four volumes of Vietnamese poetry and coedited several anthologies.
“In trying times, readers will find refuge in Collins’s intelligent and generous lyric reflections.” —Publishers Weekly
“The poems shine a light on the casual cruelties the powerful inflict upon the vulnerable, the exploitation, the inhumanity, the total lack of empathy. . . . The tone is necessarily elegiac but the verse is written in a style that is at once allusive and expository, suggestive and explicit.” —North of Oxford Review
"A dazzling poet whose poetry is poised at the juncture between the lyric and ethics. Her 2006 book-length examination of the history of lynching, Blue Front, is the first serious attempt by a white poet to examine this horrific aspect of the history of American racism." —Cynthia Hogue, AWP Chronicle
"In White Papers, "her daring new collection, Collins subjects herself to an unrelenting inquisition on the subject of race. As thoroughly researched as a textbook, yet as gripping as the best of memoirs.” —Megan Marshall, Radcliffe Quarterly
"Admit One: An American Scrapbook is "a strikingly original collection that combines brilliant storytelling and compelling commentary on ethics and race." —Elizabeth Lund, Washington Post
"Collins renders the most humbling, gorgeous, and inscrutable features of human existence as if they might be made legible." —Publishers Weekly (starred review)