Light Thickens   (April 2009)


By Elizabeth Biller Chapman

ISBN: 978-0-912592-66-4

Light Thickens is the winner of the 2008 Robert McGovern Publication Prize

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"Elizabeth...writes with vigor and soul -- her luminous poems shine like beacons.”

- Naomi Shihab Nye


“…what a lovely image with its powerful metaphors of light and death, life and living illumination all inseparable, and the brevity and cruelty and rush of the moment in it.  The strain of memory, grief, recurring light plays all through the poems.”

- W.S. Merwin, in praise of Candlefish


“Reading Elizabeth Biller Chapman’s poems is like inhaling draught after draught of perfume, except instead of becoming numb, your sense of smell sharpens.  ‘Razor clams lie in the cole, creamed honey of their shells.’  For pure luxe of language, no one is more adept.  Chapman’s imagery is stunning.”

- Enid Shomer


About the Author

Elizabeth Biller ChapmanAlthough born into a literary family—her parents edited and published The Writer magazine and The Writer’s Handbook—Elizabeth Biller Chapman did not write her first poem until she was forty-three.  Since then, however, her work has appeared in Poetry, Prairie Schooner, Bellevue Literary Review, Image and The Texas Observer

Her poem “On the Screened Porch” was included in Best American Poetry, 2002. Creekwalker, her 1995 chapbook, won the (M)other Tongue Press international competition, and her collection, Candlefish, was published in 2004 by University of Arkansas Press.  It was one of four manuscripts chosen by Enid Shomer as part of their Poetry Series.

Chapman earned her B.A. from Smith College, her M.A. from the Shakespeare Institute, and her Ph.D. from Columbia University.; spent 17 years as a psychotherapist; and has taught at Claremont McKenna, Radcliffe, Scripps and Smith Colleges.  She lives in Palo Alto, California.

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