Holly Iglesias is the author of two poetry collections, Souvenirs of a Sunken World and Angles of Approach, and a critical work, Boxing Inside the Box: Women’s Prose Poetry. She has taught at University of North Carolina-Asheville and University of Miami, focusing on documentary and archival poetry, and translated the work of Cuban poet, Caridad Atencio. She is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the North Carolina Cultural Council, the Edward Albee Foundation, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Her poems have appeared in many journals and in anthologies such as The House of Your Dreams: an International Collection of Prose Poetry,Nothing to Declare: a Guide to the Flash Sequence, The Best of the Prose Poem,and Sweeping Beauty: Contemporary American Women Poets Do Housework.
If you are a writer in want of dynamite material, it really helps if you grew up in a white bread Midwestern suburb and were taught by nuns (“Each night I pray one Hail Mary for good grades, one for a vocation, and one for miniature golf”), and as a young adult found yourself embedded in a refugee community, trapped in the middle of the culture wars. The threat of obliteration is a theme here, whether by air-raid or terrorist bomb or the conditions of exile. We may be, as the author claims, “a mere speck in the cosmos,” but in her hands, even a mere speck contains multitudes. Holly Iglesias’ Sleeping Things is a crowning achievement from one of our most wry, incisive poets—¡Perfecto!
—Madeleine Blais, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of To the New Owners: a Martha's Vineyard Memoir
Sleeping Things is luminous, marvelously succinct, and always engaging. Iglesias renders the spectacle of growing up not with reflexive, all-too-easy nostalgia but with clear-eyed affection, meticulous precision and gusto, giving day-to-day incidents and reclaimed details of that hopeful, rambunctious Cold War era a sense of delightful enterprise and luster. This new book is a refreshingly artful, savvy meditation on the past, rife with compassion and humor, one to celebrate, savor, and enjoy!
— Cyrus Cassells, author of The Crossed-out Swastika
With stubborn joy, Iglesias refuses to let sleeping things lie, and we as readers are reawakened to why such human reclamation is so absolutely consequential. Whether turning her attention to Catholic grade school Cold War days where “students pray to pure space, that place where the future blooms,” the Cuban community in Miami conjuring an island that seems almost imaginary, or the glimpse of a younger self sipping coffee in Spain “dressed as the girl in Dylan’s song who never stumbles, who’s got no place to fall,” Iglesias unfailingly finds the pitch-perfect, sonic delight that only poetry can provide.
—David Clewell, author of Taken Somehow by Surprise