Hailey Leithauser's poetry has appeared in the Gettysburg Review, Poetry, and in the Best American Poetry and Best New Poets anthologies. She has received numerous awards, including a Discovery / The Nation Award, and an independent artists grant from the Maryland State Arts Council. She lives in the Maryland suburbs near Washington, D.C. (Author photo by Sandra Beasley)
Winner of the Emily Dickinson First Book Award
from the Poetry Foundation
Swoop is a sonically audacious first book, a ringing up and down the musical scales. Hailey Leithauser’s resplendent array of forms—from traditional verse to more fragmented, onrushing experiments—takes the reader to the heights of lyricism. In these poems, sharp objects speak up for themselves, sex is taken up alfresco (among other things), an enigmatic question is posed from To Have and Have Not, and the song of a mockingbird drives us out of bed. A paean to excess, Swoop is a virtuosic and exhilarating debut.
“Marianne Moore wrote that an essential poetry component is gusto. Hailey Leithauser’s poems make the brain buzz with infectious rhyme and lusty rhythms. It’s hard to sit still while reading them, so truly are they busting with gusto. This poet catches the glorious din of the world, the gorgeous, full-bore orchestra of thought melodies, vowel-and-consonant romps, trills of perception, diction collisions. It’s original, invigorating, inebriating work. Part of the delight in reading Leithauser is that meaning is never a casualty of the music, but intensified by it. What a pleasure to read these poems and 'drown in word nectar.'”