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The Necessity of Wildfire: Poems (Paperback)

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Winner of the Wren Poetry Prize selected by final judge Ada Lim n, Caitlin Scarano's second full-length collection is The Necessity of Wildfire. It begins, "To not harm / each other is not enough. I want to love you / so much that you have no before." These poems chase a singular, thorny question: how does where and who we came from shape who and how we love? Judge Ada Lim n says the resulting collection is "hungry, clear-eyed, tough, and generous."

Though originally from the South, Scarano's imagination is galvanized by the Pacific Northwest--floods and wildfires, the Salish Sea and the North Cascades, and the humans and animals whose lives intersect and collide there. In this collection, Scarano reckons with a legacy of violence on both sides of her family, the death of her estranged father, the unraveling of two long-term relationships, the complexity of sexuality, and her decision not to have children. With fierce lyricality, these poems--"stories without monsters, / stories without morals"--resist both redemption and blame, yet call in mercy.

About the Author

Originally from Southside Virginia, Caitlin Scarano (she/they) is a writer based in Bellingham, Washington. She holds a PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and an MFA from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. They were selected as a participant in the NSF's Antarctic Artists & Writers Program and spent November 2018 in McMurdo Station in Antarctica. Her debut collection of poems is Do Not Bring Him Water. Her work has appeared in Granta, Entropy, Carve, and Colorado Review. You can find them at

Product Details
ISBN: 9781949467789
ISBN-10: 1949467783
Publisher: Blair
Publication Date: April 1st, 2022
Pages: 92
Language: English