Myrmurs is an innovative variant of the sestina form (a medieval mechanism of desire that spirals around six end words). Connecting medieval textuality to contemporary politics and poetics, this poem explores living systems: cities and languages as self-organizing entities; ants; interspecies entanglements; strange attachments; neocolonialism and how to break free of it. Following on her critically acclaimed debut collection fur(l) parachute (published by BookThug in 2013), this is the second volume in Shannon Maguire's planned medievalist trilogy.
"What a relief to find ant traffic arriving at our picnic. Maguire's poems are acrawl with chaser light shuttles and swaps and deep-kissing industry. Lie back on the cat lick pen nib and let the interswarm of city and green, dream and wake, queer and norm work through your ears, yielding nothing but gorgeous trouble." --Susan Holbrook, author of Joy is So Exhausting
Imagine a sestina taken apart by ants and reconfigured as segmented fruit. Imagine empty anglophone calories exposed as petroleum rainbows. Imagine a poetics propelled not by sensitivity to comparison or likeness, but instead by pheromones and their incommensurate, contrapuntal perceptual worlds. Shannon Maguire's Myrmurs experiments on a culture of experimentation. The result is a diffractive study of bodies of noise--in all their queer, incorrigible biological and linguistic volumes. This extraordinary book will crawl all over you. --Adam Dickinson, author of The Polymers