Winner of the 2014 Melissa Lanitis Gregory Poetry Prize
THE ACADEMY OF HAY
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Julia Shipley’s luminous debut collection lingers in the liminal spaces where transition and connection occur. With intelligence and compassion, The Academy of Hay delivers a feminist response to our world straight from the earth.
PRAISE FOR THE ACADEMY OF HAY
“If Thoreau’s currently reincarnated, odds are he’s Shipley, whose title encapsulates her self-deprecating humor, playfulness, and study of nature and farming; asking fraught metaphysical questions, shrinking from no mud or dung, mortal truths or cosmic rabbit holes; finding redemption from frustrated desire in nature’s bounty, and from human darkness in the more apprehensible night; in these sensual, musical poems where, ‘purses of milkweed/leak a soft exhaust,’ and a pair of hands, which love and butcher, are named Jesus and Judas.”
—April Ossmann, author of Anxious Music
“Out of Hayden Carruth territory comes a poet who does not distinguish the work of the hands from the work of the mind. Real things—twine, draft horses, shovels—enrich the poems that arrive as Shipley cleans garlic or broadcasts rye. This is the poetry of authenticity, part of the literary canon of an industrial people entering the Ecozoic Era. Shipley’s work is mostly light-hearted, sometimes sobering, and always a pleasure to read.”
—Janisse Ray, author of The Seed Underground
“With the thrill of each metaphor, Shipley reminds us of the connections between farm work and poetry—that culture actually comes from cultivating ground.”
—Molly Peacock, author of The Second Blush
About the Author: Julia Shipley is an independent journalist, farminista, and the author of Adam's Mark: Writing From the Ox House (Plowboy Press, 2014), selected as a Boston Globe Best Books of 2014. Her writing has also appeared in Alimentum: The Literature of Food, Burnside Review, CutBank, Cincinnati Review, Colorado Review, December Magazine, FIELD, Flyway, Fourth Genre, Green Mountains Review, North American Review, Orion, Poetry, Poet Lore, The Rumpus, Small Farmer's Journal, Taproot, Terrain.org , Whole Terrain, and Wildbranch: An Anthology of Nature, Environmental, and Place-Based Writing. A two-time recipient of grants from the Vermont Community Fund and the Vermont Arts Council, she’s also been a fellow at The Frost Place and The Studios of Key West. A native of suburban southeastern Pennsylvania, she spent her twenties migrating from farm to farm working for Community Supported Agriculture projects in the Northeast until 2004 when she began Chickadee Farm. She is married to one man and six acres in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom.