Rebecca Givens Rolland

96 pp.

6 × 9, Paperback







In The Wreck of Birds, the first winner of Bauhan Publishing’s May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize, Rebecca Givens Rolland
embraces an assimilation of internal feeling and thought with circumstances of the natural world and the conflicts and triumphs of our human endeavors. Here, we discover a language that seeks to at once replicate and transcend experiences of loss and disaster, and together with the poet “we hope that such bold fates will not forget us.” Even at the speaker’s most vulnerable
moments, when “Each word we’d spoken / scowls back, mirrored in barrels of wind” these personal poems insist on renewal.  With daring honesty and formal skill, The Wreck of Birds achieves a revelatory otherness—what Keats called the “soul-making task” of poetry.
—Walter E. Butts, 2009-2014 New Hampshire Poet Laureate


The May Sarton New Hampshire Prize is named for May Sarton, the renowned novelist, memoirist, poet, and feminist (1912-1995) who lived for many years in Nelson, New Hampshire, not far from Peterborough, home of William L. Bauhan Publishing. Bill Bauhan was honored to publish Sarton’s poetry collection As Does New Hampshire in 1968. To celebrate the 2012 centennial of Sarton’s birth, Bauhan Publishing inaugurated the May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize. This year’s judge was the Poet Laureate of New Hampshire, Walter Butts.

Rebecca Givens Rolland is a speech-language pathologist and doctoral student at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her poetry has previously appeared in journals including Colorado Review, American Letters & Commentary, Denver Quarterly, Witness, and the Cincinnati Review, and she is the recipient of the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship, the Clapp Fellowship from Yale University, an Academy of American Poets Prize, and the Dana Award.