Our Bookseller says:
refugia: areas in which a population of organisms can survive through a period of unfavorable conditions, especially glaciation.
Kyce Bello’s Refugia is ecopoetry that is, unfortunately, increasingly topical. This book deals in the beauty of breaking, but doesn’t shy away from the fact that things are breaking. Bello interlaces landscape with lineage, asking vital questions: What does domesticity mean in a world on fire? What will we have to leave behind?
An almost violent read, certain to leave you dwelling on how it feels to live in rupture. As if we weren’t already. – Terry
Winner of the inaugural Interim 2018 Test Site Poetry Series Prize, Refugia is a bright and hopeful voice in the current conversation about climate change. Kyce Bello’s stunning debut ponders what it means to inhabit a particular place at a time of enormous disruption, witnessing a beloved landscape as it gives way to, as Bello writes, “something other and unknown, growing beyond us.” Ultimately an exploration of resilience, Refugia brings to life the author’s home ground in Northern New Mexico and carefully observes the seasons in parallel with personal cycles of renewal and loss. These vivid poems touch upon history, inheritance, drought, and most of all, trees—be they Western conifers succumbing to warming temperatures, ramshackle orchards along the Rio Grande, or family trees reaching simultaneously into the past and future.
Like any wilderness, Refugia creates a terrain that is grounded in image and yet many-layered and complex. These poems write us back into an ecological language of place crucial to our survival in this time of environmental crisis.