The Night Divers
Melanie McCabe’s third collection moves like a record, cyclical and singing. These elegiac poems turn over the tender and fraught intimacy of two sisters—one gone and one left to tell their story. The reader is invited into their shared history via a wonderfully precise imagination that is grounded in the real. This speaker is haunted, not by spirits, but by the physical world that her sister has departed, as in the opening of “Days That Should Have Been Yours”: “Damp earth and honeysuckle rise into the air / I am left with.” Each poem brims with a quiet intensity. As a collection, they hover like a murmuration—cohesive, sensual, just high enough to see everything clearly.
—Danielle Cadena Deulen