RELEASE DATE: APRIL 4TH
How Did This Happen?
POEMS FOR THE NOT SO YOUNG ANYMORE
This book is for every woman who has faced “OMG, how did this happen?” moments of aging, from ego-gutting recognitions (your mother’s face stares out from your previously reliable bathroom mirror), to nerve-shredding indignities (there are few hours in life less agreeable than those dedicated to the ceremony known as a mammogram – except the ones dedicated to the colonoscopy). And worse.
This is 40 and then some. This is aging: something that happens to other people, until it happens to you. That gray hair. Those apple cheeks puddling into jowls. To bother with vanity or (pretend to) ignore it? The pap smear scare. Cold sweat at the doctor’s and hot flashes at night. Issues cosmetic and cosmic–but wait, how did this happen?
WHERE TO PREORDER:
THE SIX STAGES OF
aging while female
COVERED IN OUR BOOK
When you don’t recognize yourself in the mirror.
When you realize aging is a thing.
When you think you can make it all go away.
When you realize you can’t even.
When you find a way to live with yourself.
When you find a way to live in the world.
Andrea Seabrook, NPR:
This is the book I didn’t even know I needed—until I found myself crying within the first few pages. “Growing up” and “growing older” can feel lonely—thinking no one else feels the same way or experiences the same losses and hopes and fears. In these poems, and in the hilarious, touching commentary accompanying them, I found solace and joy. How Did This Happen is not your mother’s anthology. It is a fierce, funny, guided meditation, set in poetry, through the insult, grit and grace of aging; a thinking woman’s guide to growing older. This is a book to love, now and for the months and years to come.
Dahlia Lithwick, Senior Editor, Slate:
After all the eye creams and diets and the miscarriage and the 3 am terrors, we will at least and forever have poems. This gorgeous, hilarious, heartbreaking and wise roadmap to becoming the Women whose Roots are Showing, feels like stumbling into that secret Facebook group you always dreamed of: where your very best friends are all waiting for you brandishing poems of pain and laughter, and admonishing you to “tell the truth if you can.” And thanks to Mary and Elizabeth, you’ll find that you can.
Lisa Russ Spaar, poet, professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Virginia:
Any anthology of poems must answer the question “so what?” Why this gathering of poems about… meerkats, ghost towns, salt and pepper shakers, New Jersey diners? How Did This Happen? Poems for the Not So Young Anymore answers the question in spades, reminding us at every turn that we are mortal, aging, and not alone. Just as moving and entertaining as the curated poems (contributors range from Euripides to Sharon Olds, Emily Dickinson to Ada Limón, Shakespeare to Rita Dove) are the Introduction and contextualizing prose passages by the editors themselves, whose moxie, stand-up humor, pop-cultural savvy, authenticity, and humanity shine with forthright, intelligent consolation on every page. This is a book for women (and men!) of all ages.
Martha Woodroof, novelist (Small Blessings):
This wondrous, salty, poignant, witty poetry collection is an invitation to all us women of a certain age to get real about Life after Babedom. In my loooooong experience, whenever the times in my life are a changing, nothing makes me feel quite as deeply understood and accompanied as a good poem. So please: Read! Laugh! Cringe! and Carry On!