2002. 1-881163-39-3 / 1-881163-40-7
“In Molly Bendall’s gorgeous new book, Ariadne’s Island, the contemporary moment and Ariadne and Theseus’ mythic moment of ‘Pain and Departure’ are driven together. Out of that collision issues a world jagged, askew, and ravishing. Ariadne's Island is a ‘house of shimmering water’ in which time, love, and departure dodge and circle, slippery as fish. What endures is the presiding force of a woman's voice: a current that cuts the vacancies of desertion into form. This is a brilliant book: glittering and intelligent.”
“In Ariadne’s Island, Molly Bendall sustains a mythos of absolute immediacy. The weather is alive, and the world shows forth in every gesture of syllable and sea. But there is more. These poems propose and prove the uncontrollable embodiment of perfect loves. ‘I'm pulled into petals and I'm surprised / I welcome it so.’ Ariadne’s Island welcomes vision home to its best world. This is a wonder book.”
“Bendall lets loose unidentifiable viruses in the aesthetic world of posed appearances: poetry, ballet, sculpture, painting, and dressing well. She weighs what stands forth with what is withheld. In her world, being is at once more and less than it seems. Such ontological queasiness is, of course, up to date; it’s Djuna Barnes, it’s Colette, made current.”
—Calvin Bedient, Poetry
About the Author
Molly Bendall was born in Richmond, Virginia. Her first book of poems After Estrangement won the Peregrine Smith Poetry Prize in 1992. Her second book Dark Summer was published in 1999 by Miami University Press. She has received the Eunice Tietjens Prize from Poetry magazine, the Lynda Hull Poetry Award from Denver Quarterly, and two Pushcart Prizes. She currently teaches at the University of Southern California and lives in Venice, California.
Author Photo by: Laura Berton