Aptly titled, "Crush" juxtaposes the lighthearted anxiety of having a crush on someone against the crushing weight of losing them. This book of poems is simultaneously delightful and absolutely devastating. Siken can write an ending line unlike any other poet, and his words will feel like a weight inside you.
If you enjoyed Ocean Vuong's "Night Sky With Exit Wounds" then definitely read "Crush."
-- Stephanie— From Stephanie S. Staff Picks
Richard Siken's Crush, selected as the 2004 winner of the Yale Younger Poets prize, is a powerful collection of poems driven by obsession and love. Siken writes with ferocity, and his reader hurtles unstoppably with him. His poetry is confessional, gay, savage, and charged with violent eroticism. In the world of American poetry, Siken's voice is striking.
In her introduction to the book, competition judge Louise Gluck hails the "cumulative, driving, apocalyptic power, and] purgatorial recklessness" of Siken's poems. She notes, "Books of this kind dream big. . . . They restore to poetry that sense of crucial moment and crucial utterance which may indeed be the great genius of the form."
About the Author
Richard Siken lives in Tucson, Arizona. He is cofounder and editor of the literary magazine spork.