Leaves Surface Like Skin
In Leaves Surface Like Skin, Michelle Menting articulates gorgeous, strange visions of nature inflected by human interference. A forest is interrupted by a graveyard of Bob’s Big Boy statuettes; ruling cockroaches populate a nuclear fall-out film; lichen becomes litter; a horse and farrier practice their choreography, as he “let[s] her lean on him, her hips cocked, almost delicate.” These poems teem with litany, landscape, literal and figurative image; an awareness of mortality hovers, not so much afterlife as underlife. Menting has a gift for moody and luminous phrasing: “For some, the world is wood tick wicked.” There’s magic to a collection that does such heavy lifting with a light touch.
Michelle Menting is an Assistant Editor of Split Rock Review.