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General Release from the Beginning of the World

Free Verse Editions

And Haunt the World

Ghost City Press

A Collaborative Chapbook 

by Flower Conroy and Donna Spruijt-Metz

Free for you to download here


Cover Art Old on Panel by Gershom

Cover Design by David Blakesley & Chloé Brun

Stitched equally with wit, tenderness, and the grace of longing, the poems of General Release from the Beginning of the World reinvigorate the metaphysical tradition for our still-new century. Donna Spruijt-Metz riffs on the very Psalms that she also interrogates, seeking answers from a genderless, nameless deity here referred to only as YOU – answers to the question of hauntedness (“the endless repetition/of the first loss”), of what it means to be haunted by a father’s death, by a mother’s lies about that death. “[R]eel me through, catch me/on the other side/with YOUR hidden hands,” says Spruijt-Metz, addressing a deity as elusive as her father himself. These brave poems prove their own way forward to the difficult doubleness of truth: it can set you free but, first, it’ll break your heart. These impressive poems will, too.


                                                             ----Carl Phillips 


And Haunt the World Front Cover.jpg

Cover Art Old on Panel by Gershom

Cover Design by Chloé Brun

Once, Flower made a list of last lines of Emily Dickinson poems. She thought they would make beguiling titles—that we could both work on Emily poems—exchange them with each other. Sometimes a last line inspired its poem. Sometimes a poem that was already partially written was attracted to a particular line as a title. We passed the poems back and forth so often that it was often unclear to either of us who wrote what. Returning to the Emily poems after a brief interlude, we were bewildered by how unfamiliar the pieces had become; a line I believed was mine curled like an unfurled fern leaf unto itself, a muddled melding of my and Donna’s voices (muddled, as in a mud from which eerie stems stake forth, thorned, petaled or gilled and capped) until who could be sure where one hand began and the other took over? What a delight. What a delight to lose ourselves thisway, having been led afield by the genius of Emily.

Slippery Surfaces

Finishing Line Press

Slippery Surfaces deftly brings narrative situation and lyric song into coalescence.  Spruijt-Metz’s ultimate subject is memory itself, which she movingly describes in its various guises—as lens, as veil, as mirror.

                                                                   – Rick Barot

"Daughter and Mother, Amsterdam, Tram 4" alone is worth the cover price of Donna Spruijt-Metz's new collection. This series of conversation poems between a mother and daughter deftly and quietly devastates. 

                                                                  – Maggie Smith

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