Black Lawrence Press



From Trace:

Wolf Cento

What do we leave, living?
Always the silence remains kneeling—
each letter a closed house.
& what comes after, looking back
on the mind itself, looking for home
as night drifts up like a little boat
or a pattern of small flowers.
There a screen of vertical timber,
trees fade over into fog
just as bodies flow
safe from the wolf’s black jaw.

First published in Quarterly West


  • Simone Muench's wolf centos are an astonishing poetic achievement. They are both gorgeous and dangerous, powerful and sleek, elusive yet alluring. Ultimately, the poems are like wolves themselves—they are mysterious, we want to see them and to know them. What is most amazing is how Muench manages to construct poems from lines and fragments of other poems that are as intense, as charged, and as revelatory as a typical Simone Muench poem. I wonder if there is anything she cannot do. This is one of the most intriguing books of poems I've read in the last several years.
    —Dean Rader
  • Simone Muench traces the outline of loss in the shape of a wolf. Part howl, part flower, this brilliant and passionate new collection of poetry combines quotations with memory. Muench leaves traces of other writers' lines on the forest floor for readers to follow, path to a fairy tale in which animals swallow human emotions and humans turn feral by starlight. Trace highlights Muench's dazzling, delirious wordplay; her poems double as musical notation, sound detached from referent that exists purely for the pleasures of the tongue.
    —Carol Guess

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Simone Muench

Simone Muench is the author of six full-length books including Lampblack & Ash (Sarabande, 2005), Orange Crush (Sarabande, 2010), Wolf Centos (Sarabande, 2014), and Suture, a collaborative book of sonnets written with Dean Rader, (Black Lawrence Press, 2017). Her chapbook Trace received the Black River Award (Black Lawrence Press, 2014). She is a recipient of a 2013 NEA fellowship and the 2014 Meier Foundation for the Arts Achievement Award, which recognizes artists for their innovation, achievements and community contributions. She received her Ph.D from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and is Professor of English at Lewis University where she teaches creative writing and film studies and serves as chief faculty advisor for Jet Fuel Review.

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