Laura Mullen

"In her eighth poetry collection, which nudges the edge of memoir, Mullen excavates the past in the context of exploring the intricate relationships among experience, memory, and expression. For Mullen, “memory makes us each our own guest/(g)host,” and, in focusing on narratives that resist psychological resolution, she deploys an array of literary techniques to reveal the myriad troubled ways we inhabit our selves."
--Publishers Weekly
“Enduring Freedom [is] a galloping great read, a page-turner, and dazzles with linguistic mischief and wit... I am thrilled by it.”
----Hazel White
Murmur collects an astonishing array of stories into language as a terra incognita occasioning the uncanny and always troubled confluence of the subject, the bodies it inhabits and the linguistic remainder. Mullen animates narrative at the level of its basic semantic pulse. Never since Beckett has the unnamed been so chilling...”

--Steve McCaffery
"Solid and brave and relentlessly inventive."
--Cal Bedient
"A brilliant, utterly original, fully realized work that wickedly out-tropes horror's cliches and devices.... wonderfully immediate, making an exaggerated, rollicking introduction to many of the pre-occupations, rhetorics and methods of experimental poetry."
--Publishers Weekly
"There's a rigor and intensity in Mullen's search for truth that often take her to breathtaking lengths." --C.K. Williams // "Accuracy of spirit and ferocity of intelligence prevail...This is thrilling and exacting work." --Jorie Graham
"Laura Mullen proceeds from near void into a powerful reconstruction of self…After I Was Dead is wildly versatile formally, restlessly roving from verse to prose to epistle and back."—Boston Review

the booklog

Faithless

August 12, 2013

“With,” the opening poem of my recent book (Enduring Freedom), haunted me—in pieces: notes, drafts, scrawled repetitions—longer than I knew. Though I recalled that the central image had been given to me (in 1990 or ‘91 Katherine Thompson had the dream of her wedding dress as a pile of ashes) my memory of the poem had me writing it somewhat quickly. But my friend Nancy Lance just sent me, out of the blue, this photo of a draft I’d given to her in ’95 or so (accidentally, on the back of another note), and then, in the same week, I opened a notebook from sometime in the 90s and found the lines again, with a sketch of the poem’s beginning. (I must’ve thought the poem would go in Murmur, at that point.) I like the fact that I kept writing pretty much the exact same phrase over and over: I was so faithful to that “faithless…”