Leicester Central Library, Bishop St, Leicester LE1 6AA
Book Launch The Significance of a Dress, Emma Lee’s fourth collection of poetry. 7-9pm Leicester Central Library, Bishop Street, Leicester LE1 6AA. Free Entry, refreshments provided.
The publisher Arachne Press describes “The Significance of a Dress” as “Poems informed by, and immersed in politics. Whether investigating the lives of refugees, families or women in crisis, everything has a significance beyond the surface. Beautiful, hair-raising words and form, utterly from the heart.”
Poet and Editor S A Leavesley says, “Nothing is unimportant in The Significance of A Dress, where next year is not the future but a question. Each refugee, suffragette or shushed voice and narrative encompassed by the poems is personal and individual, yet simultaneously universal in its reach and significance. In ‘Dismantling The Jungle’, flames form “an echo of a former life”. This vivid collection is full of such flames and echoes. Whether it’s “Each dress hangs from a noose” (‘Bridal Dresses in Beirut’) or “Everything Abdel sees is smeared, despite his glasses” (Stories from The Jungle), Emma Lee’s focus is precise, poised and packs emotional punch. Her evocative imagery is reinforced by taut lines, striking juxtapositions and intimate, moving details. The Significance of A Dress is a beautiful, powerful and haunting collection.”
Dr James Fountain, poet and reviewer says, “From the title page of The Significance of a Dress, Emma Lee cleverly fashions a feminist metaphor for #MeToo into uncompromising forms. These include the terrible symbol of bridal dresses hung from nooses in Beirut, signifying rapists absolved of their crimes through marrying their victims, a figure walking home in the UK uncertain whether she is safe from rape after a recent attack in the area, and further victims of rape and domestic abuse. The reader is never let go, with head dunked into the murky waters of domestic life until forced to accept Lee’s compelling argument of a grossly unequal world. The poet does this with immense skill in versification, giving her audience no option but to pay attention. This is daring, well-imagined poetry with global scope, giving voice to women from myriad backgrounds and cultures. It goes far beyond the boundaries of #MeToo, arguing the world has become one of disturbing realm of sexual inequality, in an atmosphere of constant threat. Lee’s collection addresses unfairness, advocating for those who have been denied the ability to speak for themselves.”
Emma Lee’s previous publications are “Ghosts in the Desert” (Indigo Dreams Publishing, 2015), “Mimicking a Snowdrop” (Thynks Press, 2014) and “Yellow Torchlight and the Blues” (Original Plus, 2004). She is Reviews Editor for The Blue Nib poetry magazine and also writes reviews for other poetry magazines and on her blog. She is a Treasurer of Leicester Writers’ Club and lives in Leicestershire.