Fraying Edge of Sky

By Danielle Hanson

Subjects: Poetry
Imprint: Distribution Partners
Paperback : 9781930337978, 80 pages, June 2018

Table of contents

Part I.

A Guide to Ridding Oneself of an Infestation of Angels
Dismantling an Angel
Instructions on Stripping
The Secret Doors
List of Confessions
A Poem in Which the Moon Rejects You
Time Lapse
The Ant Curse
A Thousand White Insects
The Constancy of Light
The Hydra as Mummy
The Zombie Minotaur
The Gods Have Deserted Us
How to Build a Bird
The Experiment

Part II.

A Piece of Fog Like a Ribbon
The Tailor
Angels as Mice
List of Things to Be Imagined
The Lake
The House
Dear Heron
Near Sleep in a Smoky Room
The Effect of Rip Van Winkle on His Neighbors
Love Song
As He Is Reading a Letter from Her
Urban Renewal
In Order to Be a Good Angel, You Must Think Like a Devil
Free Radicals
Exodus, Urban

Part III.

The Light Is Calling the Shadows
The Sparrow
Who Are You
Forest Scene
Carving a Name in the Ice of a River
The Ice Skater
Fingers Leaving a Woman
Plagues of Angels
Batting Average
How to Get Plural
Dr. Frankenstein at It Again
The Escaping Soul
Medusa as a Vampire
Bette Midler on World Tour
To You, Beautiful Old Woman
Recycling the Angels

About the Author

Poetry that takes nature by surprise, observing the world while making it anew.


Danielle Hanson's poetry presents strange images, precise, surreal, and darkly comical. They tilt the world for the reader, leaving it new and strange and beautiful. Between the destruction of angels, creation of philosophers, and use of mythological creatures, Fraying Edge of Sky captures a side of the other-world humans don't see into very often: "A walking stampede, slow and terrible. / The hospital for nonexistent children. / A mountain devouring clouds. " Hanson's beautiful lyricism and shocking imagery coalesce in wonderment, in poems that play with the power of light and dark, ultimately haunting the pages that make up her magical book, reminding us over and over of how "We are giants over the fallen. " The book won the 2017 Codhill Poetry Award.

Danielle Hanson is author of Ambushing Water (2017) and 2016 recipient of the Vi Gale Award from Hubbub. Her poems have appeared widely, including in The Atlanta Review, Blackbird, Rosebud, and Verse Daily. She is poetry editor for Doubleback Books, and has edited Hayden's Ferry Review.


"The beautiful and fanciful investigations in Danielle Hanson's Fraying Edge of Sky are homages to magical realism but are also lyrical bursts in splendidly gilt frames. The precise language of the poems conjures up the overlooked details of a world that, in its hurry, will miss them. The light in a bucket of water, the ribbon-like fog, the small mice who are angelic in their infestations—all are an inventory of the miraculous that Hanson's truly original voice urges us to hear and to hold close. " — Oliver de la Paz, author Requiem for the Orchard

"Dismantling worlds only to rebuild them anew, Danielle Hanson's poems, little worlds made cunningly, as Donne would call them, expose the surrealism behind the most ordinary things. Take the tailor who 'starts by sewing the fraying / edge of sky to a rock' and begins sewing a whole menagerie until he 'creates / a daytime field of constellations, / embroidery of a new creation. ' New indeed. These are visions like none other and if you want to see with the kind of fourfold vision Blake suggests, this original, this most precious of books is for you. " — Richard Jackson, author Broken Horizons

"Danielle Hanson's Fraying Edge of Sky traps the sun with mirrors, drowns the moon, staples spiders to the sky. There are strategies and curses, negotiations of light and dark, and, throughout, an ever-thickening swarm of angels that collide, that turn to blood, that infest. Photographs are empty, and even those emptinesses are deleted, leaving new emptinesses that are filled by a relentless drive to see things simultaneously as they are and what they intend to be. A lizard pretends to be a stone, but we still know it is a lizard; it is the pretending that strikes us. This is the heart of Hanson's poetry: artifice that shows the truth. " — Bradley Paul, author Plasma