Auguries & Divinations tracks a young woman’s coming-of-age, attuned to the unspoken rules (and liabilities) of women’s lives, the suburban underworld, and the energies of eros. An older woman, Lucie, becomes the narrator’s Beatrice in love and survival, and she returns to New England seasoned and ready to claim a life of her own making, drawing on her study of the love lyric—from Catullus to Frank Bidart—and the classical practice of augury, or observing the birds to discern human fate.
Brad Crenshaw, in choosing the book for the May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize, notes: “Heather Treseler is compelling. We immediately want to listen to her, the way we might listen to a lyric singer full of melody and rhythm. . . . But make no mistake, running through all her lyricism is a staring, unblinking intelligence that informs us about what she sees. Her vision is inclusive, generous, wide-ranging, and enthralling.”
Heather Treseler is the 2023 winner of the May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize. Her collection Parturition (Southword, 2020), received the 2019 chapbook award from the Munster Literature Centre in Cork, Ireland, and the Jean Pedrick Chapbook Prize from the New England Poetry Club. Her poems appear in The American Scholar, Kenyon Review, Harvard Review, The Irish Times, JAMA, and The Iowa Review, among other journals. Her memoir essay “My Search for Elizabeth Bishop” was included in the list of “Notable Essays and Literary Nonfiction” in Best American Essays 2022, edited by Alexander Chee. Also in 2022, she edited Beyond the Frame, Celebrating a Partnership in Public Education and the Arts, a collection of essays by distinguished New England writers, highlighting signature artworks at the Worcester Art Museum. Her work has been supported by fellowships from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Endowment for the Humanities as well as residencies at the Brandeis Women’s Studies Research Center, the Boston Athenaeum, and the T. S. Eliot House. Recipient of the George I. Alden award for Excellence in Teaching, she is a professor of English at Worcester State University.
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