Emily Bilman's poems are of astonishing power and intensity. She is forensic in her descriptions, startling in her imagery and the depth of feeling she conveys is almost frightening. Some of her poems explore - without the slightest trace of sentimentality - her relationships with her father, her son and her husband. "Malaria sweated my husband's body into a rainforest./Mosquitos seized his skin, raided his blood/and he convulsed like stung tuna on the line" ("Malaria"). But there are many subjects here - with hidden connections and strange resonances. In "The Present", she perfectly describes the act of writing a poem and the pleasure it provides: "The present prolonged is wondrous delight". In "The Screen", a poem about watching a TV programme on the concentration camps, she captures not just the horror but a sensitive viewer's reaction to the horror: "...I was, at once,/Inside and beyond the mass of bones..." Her poems are enriched by her affinity with the natural world and her deep knowledge of the arts. I know I will read this book again and again.
by Duncan Fraser
Dr. Emily Bilman is London Poetry Society's Stanza representative in Geneva where she lives and teaches. Her dissertation entitled "The Psychodynamics of Poetry" was published by Lambert Academic in 2010 and "Modern Ekphrasis" in 2013 by Peter Lang in Switzerland. "Resilience" and "A Woman By A Well" by Matador UK in 2015. Her poems, essays, and translations were published in The Battersea Review, Hunger Mountain, The High Window, The Journal of Poetics Research, Offshoots, and The London Magazine. "The Tear-Catcher" won the first prize for depth poetry in The New York Literary Magazine. "The Threshold of Broken Waters" will be published in October 2018. She blogs on http://www.emiliebilman.wix.com/emily-bilman