For and Against
Published: April 16, 2010
Paperback: 9780864925398 $17.95
Shortlisted, Next Generation Indie Book Award
Heart-corroding sex with a tin woodman. A foundering marriage like a cat on the brink of death that still manages to purr. Sharon McCartney's visceral exploration of relationships — how they begin and end, the tenuous threads that hold people together, and the events that can tear them apart — is unstinting, eyes-wide-open aware. Beginnings, endings, transitions: none elude the sometimes sardonic but always sinuous language of these finely wrought poems.
"McCartney has shown a delightful felicity in previous books with stapling phrases into the memory. For and Against expands this strength with different material, and it's a testament to her talent that rawness isn't diminished by an attention to fluency." — Brian Palmu
"You don't read these poems, you feel them: hammer in the head, shod foot on the throat, stiletto in the heart. It's those combos of wild, piercing insights (or unusual but poignant images); yep, that's what makes it good for you — or kills you, laughing." — George Elliott Clarke
"Darkly obsessive, For and Against documents the rolling flux of life — the raw wounds of relationships in moments that are, in turn, anguished, edgy, droll, and affectionate. McCartney's poems are an extreme sport — one well worth playing." — Jeanette Lynes