Advantages of Being Evergreen
It is in your hands, now just open it, anywhere, it is so good! … Oliver Baez Bendorf returns poetry to its origins of magic.
―CAConrad, author of While Standing in Line for Death
“Baez Bendorf is making a future grammar for the moment all of our vessels are free and held. I am living for the world these poems anticipate.”
―Gabrielle Calvocoressi, author of Rocket Fantastic
“To read these poems is to trust the momentum of tributaries or the distance travelled when the trail is full of switchbacks. This work is an exercise of faith. We trace scars, we follow smoke back to flame, and ‘we dream of sanctuary.'”
―Amaud Jamal Johnson, author of Darktown Follies
Forthcoming September 2019 from Cleveland State University Poetry Center, winner of the 2018 Open Book Poetry Competition. To inquire about scheduling a reading with Oliver, please go here. For information on review copies or ordering, please visit here.
Sample poems from the book:
Evergreen (Academy of American Poets Poem-A-Day)
River I Dream About (American Poetry Review)
Ritual (Black Warrior Review)
Other Names (Poetry Northwest)
The Gospel According to X (chapbook)
Selected for the 2018 Rane Arroyo Chapbook Series, forthcoming Summer 2019 from Seven Kitchens Press. Available for pre-order now as a limited time bundle.
The Spectral Wilderness
Winner of the Stan & Tom Wick Poetry Prize, selected by Mark Doty. Best Poetry Book of 2014 —Entropy. Must-Read Poetry Debut from 2015 —Lithub. Spectacular Book of 2015 —Split This Rock.
Kent State University Press: Wick Poetry Series, January 2015. 88 pages, Paperback, ISBN:978-1-60635-211-3
Sample poems from the book:
Queer Facts About Vegetables (Poetry Society of America)
I Promised Her My Hands Wouldn’t Get Any Larger (Ninth Letter)
Patrón (Indiana Review)
Inventory (Verse Daily)
Love and the Bodega (Tupelo Quarterly)
“Surrealist, plowed in a pastoral landscape.” —Southeast Review
“Astonishing.”—The Literary Review
“At once funny and unbearably sad.”—Blackbird
“What gorgeous and ravenous rackets Oliver Bendorf’s poems are made of; what a yearning and beautiful heart. ‘Lift a geode from the ground and crack me open,’ he writes, which is more or less what these poems do for me: break me open to what might sparkle and blaze, what might glisten and burn inside. The Spectral Wilderness is a wonderful book.” —Ross Gay
“Bendorf’s poems give us all we have ever wanted, to wake up and feel that the body we are in is ours, that the hands on the ends of our wrists―our body’s gates of tenderness―are large enough to hold in them all the things we have desired… In poem after poem he builds and rebuilds a body, a story, a desire that are at once familiar and strange, capable of brightness like any headlight but also capable of losing that light in their brokenness which makes us love them even more.”―Natalie Diaz
“Bendorf’s collection indeed opens the door to a spectral wilderness, an otherworldly pastoral, a queer ecology endlessly transformed by possibility, grief, and the unruly wanting of our names and bodies. Stunningly lyrical and beautifully theoretical, The Spectral Wilderness is an invitation one cannot turn down.” —Stacey Waite