Instead, It Is Dark


Author Cynthia Hogue

Following her husband’s massive heart attack, Cynthia Hogue began writing poems based on dreams and memories that he, born during WWII in occupied France, had as a child growing up in a time of vast postwar food shortages. Hogue embarked on a quest to discover if there were more such memories in her extended family in France. When asked, family members told her never-before-shared tales of parents who were POWs, collaborators, Resistance fighters, and one most vulnerable―of a hidden child. Hogue spent years researching the lives of civilians during war, work crystallized in her tenth collection of poetry, "Instead, It Is Dark." The personal is alchemized as Hogue weaves history and present day in poems that explore how there, here, an individual voice in the stark language of lyric poetry, speaks a complex truth and casts a laser light on violence, resilience, survival, and―the heart of this collection―love.


Cynthia Hogue is a professor emeritus of English at ASU, where she formerly held the Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry.

Praise for this book

In this world of tragedy, it is tenderness that gives us a chance, it is a whisper that surprises and awakes. Which is to say: Cynthia Hogue has written a beautiful spell of a book, one that investigates the real, yes, but also opens the door into the mysterium of time.

Ilya Kaminsky Author of "Dancing in Odessa" and "Deaf Republic"
Watercolor image of two birds flying under title
Date published
Red Hen Press

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