Paperback / softback
March 17, 2018
8.50 Inches (US)
5.50 Inches (US)
.25 Pounds (US)
$10.00 USD, £8.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Girl with Death Mask

Love, tequila, sex, first periods, late nights, abuse, and heartache. The journey from girl to womanhood is brimming with transformative magic that heals even as it shatters. These are the memories that haunt the dreams of what was and what could have been in Girl with Death Mask.

In four rich and imaginative movements of poems, Jennifer Givhan profiles the suffering and the love of a Latina girl and then mother coming to terms with sexual trauma. Her daughter is a touchstone of healing as she seeks to unravel her own emotions as well as protect the next generation of budding women with a fierceness she must find within. Givhan exploits changing poetic forms to expose what it means to mature in a female body swirling with tenderness, violence, and potential in an uncertain world. Girl with Death Mask is a cathartic and gripping confession of the trials of adolescence and womanhood.

About the Author

Jennifer Givhan is a Mexican-American poet from the Southwestern desert. She is the author of Landscape with Headless Mama (2015 Pleiades Editors' Prize) and Protection Spell (2016 Miller Williams Poetry Prize Series). Her honors include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry, a PEN/Rosenthal Emerging Voices Fellowship, and The Frost Place Latin@ Scholarship, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in many publications including Ploughshares, POETRY, Boston Review, Blackbird, and The Kenyon Review. She is Editor-in-Chief at Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and she lives with her family in New Mexico.


"Givhan crafts a clear-eyed narrative of Latina womanhood in this lovely collection ripe with longing, hope, and broken faith. . . . Givhan explores the dark sides of adolescence and womanhood with searing imagery and a healthy dose of empathy."—Publishers Weekly

"Jennifer Givhan, we're awed by your use of pause and pacing, as you lead us to better understanding a woman's landmine-filled journey out of childhood."—ForeWord Reviews

"Girl With Death Mask is so inspiring, it may just be that rare bird, a poetry bestseller."—Cultural Weekly

"In the image-rich, circuitous journey of Girl with Death Mask, the girl both defies and weds death and its accomplice, sex, defies and weds collective mythologies. She flies and she falls, floats and drowns. . . In this raw, kinetic masterpiece of survival Givhan assures us, 'even through death masks,' Givhan assures us, 'we can kiss.'"—Diane Seuss, author of, Four-Legged Girl

"These poems beautifully, convincingly do what I hope poems might–they disrupt what I know, or what I thought I knew. And in that way they invent for me a world. A world haunted and brutal, yes. But one mended, too, by the love and tenderness and vision and magic by which these poems are made. Again and again I found myself looking into space, sort of shaken, sort of grasping, turning and turning inside a line or phrase, inside an image or metaphor, inside somedevastating music."—Ross Gay, author of, Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude

"Magic, alchemy, transmogrification, and the body's deep obsessions fill these lyrically charged poems with an unearthed power. Givhan is a poet who knows the bones of her own world so well that she can rearrange them into anything she wishes. Both surreal and rooted in truth, the complex and gorgeous poems in Girl with Death Mask continue to shake, stun, and weave their spells long after the book is closed."—Ada Limón, author of, Bright Dead Things

"Girl with Death Mask shake the bars of our prisons and also those on which we write our music. . . . These poems illuminate how to love the body How hard our bodies work to bring their wisdom to us. How hard it is to love what we How hard it is to learn the ways that love abides despite our best efforts to dislodge, disprove, and doubt it. These poems find their way. They shake up our knowing in the best ways."—Irena Praitis, author of, The Last Stone in the Circle
Indiana University Press
Blue Light Books

9780253032799 : girl-with-death-mask-givhan
Paperback / softback
94 Pages
$10.00 USD

Other Titles by Jennifer Givhan

Belly to the Brutal

Jennifer Givhan
Aug 2022 - Wesleyan University Press
$12.99 USD - Electronic book text
$15.95 USD - Paperback / softback
$25.00 USD - Hardback

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In This World of Ultraviolet Light

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Alfred Arteaga, edited by David Lloyd, preface by Cherrîe Moraga
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Robert Fernandez
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Looking Within/Mirar Adentro

Nancy Morejón, edited by Juanamaría Cordones-Cook, translated by David Frye, Gabriel Abudu, Heather Rosario Sievert, Kathleen Weaver, Mirta Quintanales, Nancy Abraham Hall
Dec 2002 - Wayne State University Press
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