Anchor & Plume of Baton Rouge, Louisiana will be releasing Nancy Flynn’s Great Hunger as their first-ever “pocket book” on St. Patrick’s Day 2016.
About Great Hunger:
Great Hunger is a multi-part poem investigating the intersection of landscape and place as it relates to one ecological and humanitarian disaster, the mid-19th century Irish potato famine. It begins with a visit to the Irish Hunger Memorial in Lower Manhattan, mere blocks from the World Trade Center site. The poem then muses its way through varieties of the very potato itself as well as a “found poem” made up of historical texts and fragments that described the disaster. The history of Flynn’s Irish forebears figures in along with the potato’s role as a potentially vulnerable staple crop in the country of Rwanda, itself wracked by a genocide of unimaginable scale and barbarity barely two decades back.
Advance praise for Great Hunger:
Written with a fierce and lyrical intelligence and bristling with the sights, sounds, and textures of inescapable human suffering, Nancy Flynn’s Great Hunger is an unflinching sequence of poems on the Irish potato famine that killed over a million people from 1845-1851. Moving from the Irish Hunger Monument in New York City to her own Irish ancestors, Flynn brings a vivid, empathic imagination to this tragic period and in doing so holds a mirror up to our own feast-and-famine era.
—John Brehm, author of Help Is on the Way
From the opening lines of Great Hunger, Nancy Flynn startles us to grief and attention as she tallies the tragedies of the mid-nineteenth century potato famine in which Ireland lost a quarter of its population to starvation, disease, and immigration. With a keen ear and an open heart, Flynn drags us to ground level—proximate to rotting tubers and hastily closed graves—yet she does not let us look away from the callousness of the powerful, making us glance nervously about, wondering what atrocity we are just now deciding to overlook.
—Wendy Willis, author of Blood Sisters of the Republic
Flynn recently answered a few questions for Anchor & Plume editor, Amanda Mays, and you can find that interview here: http://anchorandplumepress.com/journal/2016/1/21/an-interview-with-nancy-flynn.