The Border Surrounds Us by Karen Connelly


“The hardest frontiers to cross / are the ones inside our skin.” Addressing the political from the realm of personal experience, Karen Connelly has been compared to Carolyn Forche and, mostly recently, Pablo Neruda. The most moving pieces in this book--and some of this writer’s strongest poems to date--are hymns to Burma and to Burmese people.

Moving among the haunted refugees and political dissidents on the Thai-Burma border, retelling the stories of Greek peasants, negotiating the borders between home and exile, Karen Connelly brings a great passion to even her quietest poems, and a sense of engagement with the world as both participant and witness. Ranging from richly metaphorical and sensual to sharp and spare, this work explores external as well as internal borders--“the blurred but authentic lines / between what we are and what we must become.”