'Bless This Home' by Alison Woods ’96 out in July

BY Audrey Deng, May 22, 2020

This July, Finishing Line Press will publish a new collection of poems by writing alumna Alison Woods ’96, titled Bless This Home.

Bless This Home chronicles the simple-but-never-simple business of living as a single mother, daughter, lover, questioner, fighter, and writer. The poems have no central stage; they take place in green Louisiana spaces, in country carnivals, in the Museum of Natural History, in New York.

According to the publisher, “Bless This Home takes readers on a deeply interior road trip of love and loss, passion and redemption. Fiercely felt and finely rendered, Alison Woods’ poems invite us all to share in the ‘makeshift pray-work’ of her quest to find a blessed home.”

Fellow alumna Lynn Melnick ’97 blurbed the book, writing, “What a joy and what a solace to have spent time with the elegant and ardent poems of Bless This Home. Here is the story of a life—from the questions of childhood through the exhilaration of falling in love and on through the challenges of motherhood—that, in its particular and personal details, both reflects and teaches us something about our own. Bless This Home is a prayer for all of us.”

Woods has published with this press before with the book New Forest, which won the New Women’s Voices Prize in Poetry.

Woods grew up on the Upper West Side of New York City. She studied with Robert Olen Butler at McNeese State University, Allen Ginsberg, and Lew Asekoff at Brooklyn College, and then Lucille Clifton, Richard Howard, Alfred Corn, Alice Quinn, and Lucie Brock-Broido, at Columbia University where she received a Master’s of Fine Arts in 1992. She has been published in many journals and literary publications.

Pre-orders of Bless This Home will ship on July 24.