All Pilgrim by Stephanie Ford is a finalist for the 2016 Colorado Book Award in Poetry.
All Pilgrim charts our vanishing into the modern landscape, mapping both the terror and the ecstatic vision of belonging to the world. Tuned to the intermingling of peril, banality, and beauty, each poem could be thought of as a way station: a site not for reverence or relief, but for seeing and pondering the dilemmas in which we find ourselves living. Restless in its search for illumination, the voice in these poems is at turns mordant, vulnerable, and rapturous—hungry for something to sing about, but unable to ignore the signs of crisis.
“The Other Airman,” from All Pilgrim:
The moon doesn't snuff itself out. Does hover, tethered, over fallout shelters. Tasseled rows of feed corn feel it as do boys who, in dreams, take tea with the enemy, make love to the bombardier, radio an aria in dashes and dots over the sea's flaying mirror. Did you find, Uncle, in servitude the mind is composeda brain slice under plate glass? The payload opens its petticoats, eats a city, goes rococo while a peony drops its incendiary head and a child dunks her dolls in the pool, clacks their plastic bodies together, calls you saved, and who will tell her.