Martha Rhodes

Poems By Martha Rhodes

It Being Forbidden


This May Be

  Martha Rhodes

Author of three books of poems, Martha Rhodes is a master of tone and compression. Louise Glück praised her debut collection, At the Gate, as “savage, wry, mordantly witty, tender, stern, deluded, [and] sane,” calling it “a book of immense vitality and beauty, deserving our deepest attention.” Rhodes’s second book, Perfect Disappearance, won the 2000 Green Rose Prize from New Issues Press. Robert Pinsky declared her latest book, Mother Quiet, to be “abrupt, unsettling, artfully distorted, indelible” and James Longenbach recommended it as “dark, hilarious, direct, otherworldly.” As Longenbach went on to say, “these poems display a poet in command of every note the English language is capable of sounding. They will not be silenced: they are unforgettable.”

Individual poems have been published widely in a variety of journals including Agni, Columbia, Fence, New England Review, Pleiades, Ploughshares, TriQuarterly, and the Virginia Quarterly Review, and Rhodes has been anthologized widely, appearing in Agni 30 Years, Extraordinary Tide: New Poetry by American Women, The New American Poets: A Bread Loaf Anthology, and The KGB Bar Book of Poetry, among others.

Rhodes is founder and director of Four Way Books founded in 1993 in New York City. Rigoberto González, one of her authors, describes Rhodes as “the classiest lady in poetry” and certainly one of the busiest. From her Tribeca loft, the non-profit press publishes eight to ten books a year, many to high acclaim. Four Way authors include the awarding-winning Jeffrey Harrison, Sarah Manguso, Pablo Medina, D. Nurkse, Kevin Prufer, Daniel Tobin, Cynthia Huntington, Pimone Triplett, and Susan Wheeler.

Rhodes is also known as a tough, discerning, and extremely generous mentor, having taught at Emerson College, the New School University, the University of California at Irvine, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. She currently teaches at Sarah Lawrence and the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Rhodes serves on the board of directors of several literary organizations, including Friends of Writers, Inc., and the Frost Place. She is the current director of The Frost Place Summer Poetry Conference and Festival.






    Poetry Center Reading:
    Spring 2010