Hannah Star Rogers

Northern Sea Star

I hate the feeling

of starfish arms

pulling against

my hair

burrowing against

my brow, but

I’ll never tell

My brother this

as again he holds

the nine-armed

diadem above

my head and

pronounces me

queen of the seas.

Legend


Restraint is not

the way to describe

the look you gave me

when a gray rubbery

head ascended

looked at you

and disappeared

under the boat.

Or was it under

the kelp cover?

Or did it

head out into the sea

so that the waves

camouflaged its departure,

Or did it press

its snout under

your chin and

fall fast asleep?


Black Beak Collective


Swiftly now

into the turret

and up the inside

of the brickwall

seeing no skypass

downout again

the swarm that

makes a mind

the mind that

makes a swarm

a hundred

individual choices

and my mind

makes a swarm

their minds make

a swarm

and there is

my mind

theirs.




 

Artist's Statement

Both my poetry and academic writing deal with themes that the National Park Service promotes: an awareness of the natural world and artistic and literary engagement with observed and felt ecologies. I am interested in being part of the archival impulse, at the heart of the NPS Artist-in-Residence program, to document the aesthetic impulse which is a part of our collective and individual response to encounters in our environments. Many of my poems finds roots in the labor of science and the daily observations of people closely aligned with the environment (farmers, gardeners, fisherman, and the sometimes more abstract land-watchers). Other poems consider the lives of animals and plants in the Romantic tradition: by reflecting our own minds onto objects in the world and allowing that light to bend around the material of the natural world, we often discover new ways of seeing. My poems are often referred to as having a documentary style because I like to mix direct records: language fragments, signage, and even scientific papers with stylized imagery from the natural world. My poetry writing method involves observations of people and landscapes and note-taking about particular scientific processes. I often make photographs for reference, though I do not typically treat them in an ekphrastic manner. Instead, I work from memory and impressions of the natural world.


 
woman with long blonde hair and glasses
Hannah Star Rogers

Hannah Star Rogers received her MFA in poetry from Columbia University and Ph.D. at Cornell University on the intersection of art and science. She teaches writing at Columbia University and the University of Virginia. Her poems and reviews have appeared in The Kenyon Review, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Tupelo Quarterly, The Carolina Quarterly, and The Brazenhead Review. Her flash fiction has been honored by Nat. Brut and Glimmer Train. She has received the Akademie Schloss Solitude Fellowship in Stuttgart, Germany, Djerassi Artist Residency in Woodside, CA, the international artist residency at ArtHub in Kingman, AZ, the Arctic Circle in Finland, and National Park Service writing residencies in both Schoodic, Maine and the Everglades, FL.

 

Last updated: March 2, 2019

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