“Kristin Robertson’s poems are chock-full of so much magic you’ll believe she can fly. Surgical Wing marks the emergence of an important new voice in American poetry. This book is a truly dynamite debut.” 

—David Bottoms


“Surgical Wing is awhirr with swans, geese, herons, angels, and winged creatures of all kinds. Offering startling images and glorious, musical language, the poems remind readers of humans’ kinship with animals, directly connecting the abuse of animals to the abuse of people, especially women. In this book, you will find yourself in phone booths, county fairs, fishing boats, and among ghosts. Strange birds with enter hospital waiting rooms. You will be seduced by knot-makers. You will witness illness, grief, and healing. Finally, the book itself will become the wings that steer you to a greater understanding of yourself and the world.”

—Anya Silver


In Surgical Wing, surrealistic poems visit an experimental hospital ward, manifesting visions of winged angels and medical tests, as we bear witness to a doctor’s meddling and miracles. Robertson’s poems challenge the internal and external metamorphoses of the human condition and the juxtaposition between death and life by personifying the soul through images of birds.




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