Leslie Adrienne Miller's new poetry collection marries science and poetry

Leslie Adrienne Miller’s new poetry collection marries science and poetry

“Science arose from poetry,” wrote Goethe (1749-1832). “When times change the two can meet again on a higher level as friends.”

In Leslie Adrienne Miller’s new book of poetry, readers will see them hand in hand.

The Resurrection Trade, to be released next month by Graywolf Press, is the fifth collection of poetry for Miller, a professor of English at the University of St. Thomas. Its title and theme recall the “business end of trafficking in corpses,” which, in turn, made possible the art of anatomy.

Inspired by the mysteries of early anatomical studies and medical illustrations, Miller – ever the scholar – did meticulous research in the United States and in Europe to craft the poems collected here. The volume includes listings of more than 30 works cited and consulted, from studies of the female body in ancient Greece to midwifery in 18th century England to images of gender in science. In this volume Miller muses that a “strange collusion of imaginary science and real art” yields truths about the objectification and misunderstanding of women’s bodies throughout history.

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Ted Kooser, U.S. poet laureate from 2004 to 2006, offered high praise for The Resurrection Trade. He called Miller’s poems “delightfully eclectic, learned and wise” and the book “very much like being given a rare chance to have dinner with one of the most interesting conversationalists in the world.”

Miller, of St. Paul, is a former director of the creative writing program and an alumna of Stephens College, a liberal arts college for women in Columbia, Mo. She has a master of arts degree in English from the University of Missouri and a master of fine arts in poetry from the prestigious University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She earned a Ph.D. in literature and creative writing from the University of Houston. She has taught at St. Thomas since 1991.

Miller’s previous collections include Eat Quite Everything You See ( Graywolf Press, 2002); Yesterday Had a Man In It (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1998); Ungodliness (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1994) and Staying Up for Love (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1990). She has won numerous awards and honors for her work, including the Edward Stanley Award and the Strousse Award from Prairie Schooner, a national quarterly published at the University of Nebraska; a Loft-McKnight Award of Distinction, fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Pushcart Prize and others.

Readings: Miller will give her first readings from the book on March 16 at Stephens College, followed by readings in Kansas City and Chicago. She will give the first Twin Cities reading of The Resurrection Trade at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 28, at The Loft Literary Center, 1011 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis. She also will read at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 18, at Micawber’s Books, 2238 Carter Ave., St. Paul.

To purchase the book: List price for The Resurrection Trade is $14. It will be available March 1 in local bookstores and online at www.graywolf.org.

For more information: See www.lesliemillerpoet.com or call Mary Matze at Graywolf Press, (651) 641-0077.