A list of Hannah Rousselot’s most recent publications.
Ocean Currents is a collection of poems that are immediately relatable, and tinged with waves of profound sadness. Rousselot deftly explores the depth of depression and the small cruelties of the world with lonely imagery and gorgeous metaphor. Each poem melds seamlessly into the next, telling a story of a girl who often feels hopelessness, fear, and anger, but who still sees profound beauty, and is still here.
–Mela Blust – Author of skeleton parade and they found a woman’s body
In Rousselot’s Ocean Currents, the world unpeels around us as the speaker witnesses their own psyche. Not only does Rousselot take on the language of possibility in her work, but she also tackles mental illness incisively, showing how vulnerability can be both a triumph and an act of violence. Throughout her collection, Rousselot illuminates how even our innermost senses of trust can be breached: “even now, / I can’t trust my own perception of my hurt.”
–Samantha Fain, author of Coughing Up Planets
Hannah Rousselot’s Fragments of You is a book you will read more than once. Like the love it describes, it is so satisfying that you won’t be happy without it nearby. In steamy poems like “Pool,” Rousselot re-creates the body of the beloved in ink. Her words will lodge in a permanent nook of your brain. They will well up as you contemplate your love in the bed beside you, aglow in lamplight, or swimming in the sea. This is not a sonnet sequence, like the “Astrophil and Stella” to which one poem refers, but there’s nothing loose or uncrafted in the lines – they are svelte and delicious, softly chiseled, and sometimes rough, sometimes at a voltage so intense, you have to draw your breath. And the images! The plums, the beacon, the eyes fizzier than champagne, the sand in the bottom of her pocket – they all reverberate. Of course there is also loss in this volume. Love is want, after all, a product of the fear of losing. “Adrift,” “Lost,” these simple titles belie the intensity of the lover’s eventual grief, which the poems themselves convey. So here you have it — craft and matter. Settle in for a good read.
Judy Swann, author of We are All Well: The Letters of Nora Hall, I Am Stickman, and Fool
Hannah Rousselot’s poems create “volcanoes out of coffee, fires out of sheets.” They are visions of love’s consummation, its coda and aftermath. The world once contorted itself for the persona narrator and her lover, whose absence now is “powdered dust left behind” that cuts her hands. Stars leave scars, galaxies collapse in teeth, flowers bloom from arms. Death is spoken of with raw honesty. The poet moves from effective and surprising hyperbole to direct language: “I just didn’t think you would die.” Rousselot speaks in images of wishes and waking from dreams, caught in the darkness of loss and sleeplessness. Skin peels and skull cracks open, mind boxed in like crumbs of “stale crackers.” The lover is lost and found in corners, on bookmarks, under carpets, in the seams of jeans. There is laundry and sweat. Roses punish and cut; a wolf’s personified voice breaks into the narrator’s silent fear. The work is fire and ice, fragmented and solid at the same time; “the film reel flickers,” but it is whole. A pearl discovers its worth when its shell is opened and it is “told its pain is beautiful.” Like this poet’s straight talk and haunting song.
Rosalind Brenner, author of Omega’s Garden, All That’s Left, and Every Glittering Chimera