NC Literary Hall of Fame



When There Were Horses by Pat Riviere-Seel

Main Street Rag Publishing Co.
$14.00, paperback
ISBN: 978-1-59948-885-1
September, 2021
Available from the publisher

"'I choose this earth that breaks / my heart again and again,' Pat Riviere-Seel writes. When There Were Horses addresses the ways in which we can do that, while acknowledging that, 'it cannot last, of course.' Circling around 'what to tell' and 'the truth we didn’t dare' in quiet, beautifully-honed lines, Riviere-Seel brings readers with her through loss after loss to the knowledge that 'further out is the only way back.'"
—Catherine Carter

"When There Were Horses is an exhilarating ride through the deep woods of love and loss, desire and death. From that first poem, I was more than happy to grab 'a fistful of mane, urging faster faster!' These poems are overflowing with motion, and yet, contain a stillness, a center where the voice of wisdom creates solid ground. 'Abandon/the dock, row your way into the nightmare, further/out is the only way back,' she writes.'"
—Malaika King Albrecht

"These poems come from a poet at the height of her powers, able to swim into deep pools of the senses and the deeper pools of understanding, subtle and complex as multiple ripples spreading and rebounding on the surface of a pond. These are poems to come for the pure pleasure in words and rhythms and play, then return again and again, for the intimate whisperings of a truer life under the surfaces of things.'"
—Marjorie Hudson, author of Accidental Birds of the Carolinas

Pat Riviere-Seel is the author of three poetry collections, including Nothing Below but Air and The Serial Killer’s Daughter, which won the Roanoke-Chowan Award. She taught for 15 years in the University of North Carolina Asheville’s Great Smokies Writing Program. She served as the North Carolina Poetry Society’s Distinguished Poet in the Western Region from 2016-2018. In 2017, she received the “Charlie Award” from the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival. Before earning her MFA from Queens University of Charlotte, she worked as a newspaper journalist, an editor, a publicist, and a lobbyist.

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