Looking for some dark edification? Look no further than MONSTRUM POETICA by Jezzy Wolfe. Published from Raw Dog Screaming Press, this is a poetic primer about monsters across cultures. Jezzy takes the reader on a well-researched tour of some of the creepiest and most horrifying things to crawl across the page. It’s poetry, read to be savored but I was also educated by learning about some myths I’d never heard of.

Black-eyed children is one of my favorite sections. A relatively new monster, this is my first introduction to them. Melon heads are another new-to-me creature with plenty to learn about. Classic monsters such as vampires and werewolves are explored alongside American continent nightmares like the mothman.

This is a poetry collection you will want to dip into repeatedly. Aside from the impressive collection of monsters to explore, there is the poetry. I feel like the forms must have been picked to reflect the subject. A good example of this is “Road Hazard,” a chain of linked haiku that explores yokai. In the concrete/shape poem “Dog Deadly,” Jezzy mimics the loping run of a hunting canine across the page, heightening the reader’s experience.

A beautiful collection in every way from the quality of the poems to the stunning presentation from Raw Dog, this is a book I will return to when I need something to savor. I highly recommend MONSTRUM POETICA, and I look forward to seeing more from this poet.

You can find MONSTRUM POETICA on Amazon here or see if you are the lucky winner of a copy with a bookplate signed by Jezzy Wolfe. Just leave a comment on this post and I’ll draw a name randomly next Halloween and get this book sent to you. With all the shipping issues, I am going to limit this one to the Continental US so it will actually arrive.

Want to hear Jezzy read from MONSTRUM POETICA? She was on LIT UP a few weeks ago, so wish granted.

By Angela Yuriko Smith

Angela Yuriko Smith is a third-generation Ryukyuan-American, award-winning poet, author, and publisher with 20+ years in newspapers. Publisher of Space & Time magazine (est. 1966), two-time Bram Stoker Awards® Winner, and HWA Mentor of the Year, she shares Authortunities, a free weekly calendar of author opportunities at authortunities.substack.com.


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