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Boy with Flowers

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4.53  ·  Rating Details ·  55 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Poetry. Ely Shipley's first book of poems, BOY WITH FLOWERS, won the 2007 Barrow Street Press book prize judged by Carl Phillips, the 2009 Thom Gunn Award, and was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. He also won the Utah Writer's Award in Poetry from the Western Humanities Review judged by Edward Hirsch and the Virginia Faulkner Award from Prairie Schooner.
Paperback, 71 pages
Published October 1st 2008 by Barrow Street Press
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Brent Calderwood
Aug 10, 2010 Brent Calderwood rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
(reviewed for Lambda Book Report)


Boy with Flowers, selected by Carl Phillips for the Barrow Street Press Poetry Prize, is one of the most assured collections by a first-time author to appear in recent years. Touching, lovely, and at times harrowing, Ely Shipley thrills the reader with snapshots of childhood, family, relationship, the inner life of the outsider. Often Shipley acts as ace war reporter, focusing his lens on the skirmishes waged at the borders of gender and sexual idenitity, using h
...more
James
Jan 24, 2012 James rated it it was amazing
Boy with Flowers starts out fairly narratively, with poems about childhood, usually presenting clear, easy-to-follow anecdotes.

Then as the book progresses, it heats up to include some amazing shifts/leaps/jumps within poems. Some poems seem phantasmagoric--they present smoothly shifting scenes, images morphing into other images, vignettes morphing into other vignettes. "Reflexive" is an amazing poem that way, as are "Mirror" and "Memory."

I like how Shipley is not limited by borders or boundaries
...more
Faith
Jan 05, 2009 Faith rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-poetry
One of the most enjoyable and most instructive encounters I've had with a transman, although not 100% comfortable (that's good). This poet is going places, and someday you'll wish you owned this first edition. Winner of the 2008 Barrow Street Prize.
Crystal
May 23, 2016 Crystal rated it it was amazing
If you really want to understand the transgender bathroom debate, all you need to do is read Shipley's poem "Six". This is an incredibly moving and amazing timely collection.
Beth
Aug 05, 2012 Beth rated it it was amazing
An important poet, writing from the deepest place of truth. I was honored to hear him read in Chicago in March. A must-read in poetry.
Laura
Jan 17, 2009 Laura rated it it was amazing
poetry--with which I am totally impressed and moved thus far.
Writer's Relief
Dec 08, 2016 Writer's Relief rated it it was amazing
In Boy with Flowers, Ely Shipley’s introspections on the American transgender experience resonate through time and memory as this poetry explores questions of gender, identity, and perceptions of the world. Through glimpses of his family and other childhood experiences, Shipley has crafted a powerful collection that is both revolutionary and pertinent. In poems like “Roll of Dime” and “Six,” childhood experiences become avenues for Shipley to dive deeper into societal expectations about gender, ...more
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