Savage Machinery

Savage Machinery

Finishing Line Press © 2008
ISBN: 978-1-59924-287-3
Painting: Sacrificial Grace
by Makoto Fujimura

Published by Finishing Line Press in October 2008 in an edition of 250 copies, Savage Machinery is a saddle-stitched chapbook exploring 15th and mid-century art, eros, women, and the pleasures of taste.

Libraries: Worldcat.org

“In Karen Rigby’s poems we are in a world far from innocence. We are, in fact, in the ‘savage machinery’ of the world after the fall, a world stricken with beauty and flaw. Whether writing about the ‘heart’s declensions’ in the voice of Norma Desmond, or about the ‘multiple selves’ of the onion, or the ‘dumb abandonment’ of Da Vinci’s flying machine, Rigby’s poems negotiate the balance between wonder and woundedness. Rigby’s eye is phenomenally attuned to everything it sees, and even past what’s seen, to the ‘rooms behind / the ones you know.’ The poems are vividly strange, and utterly heartbreaking.”

—Rick Barot

“The poems of Savage Machinery are driven by both a keen sense of rhythm and a confident announcement of Rigby’s metaphoric visions of the world. ‘The pure, explosive signature’ of her poetry aspires toward Blake’s admonition to ‘see not with but thro the eye,’ and because of this imaginative ambition (conveyed with music and grace), the poems reveal a vivid sensual world that seems both wholly familiar and holy strange…”

—Tod Marshall

“It’s no accident that some of these poems reference Edward Hopper. Rigby’s language evokes his sparse, barren landscapes where emptiness is tangible, menacing, and beautiful. Her poems are so packed they bloom at the touch…”

—Jim Daniels