The Resurrection Machine
Miller Williams selected this book to receive the first John Ciardi Award for Poetry, sponsored by BkMk Press of the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Many of these poems explore newly revealed dimensions of the relationship between physical and emotional identity. The book’s title, for example, is drawn from the poem “News Item: Man Receives First Hand Transplant”: “Our bodies are repaired with metallic/instruments, microscopes, and catheters,/suction hoses and scalpels–/the resurrection machine.” Yet the patient also imagines his new hand’s “history of touches,” wondering to what extent this new hand connects him to the hand’s previous physical and emotional existence. This is a timely and thoughtful collection.