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About this poet

Maureen N. McLane studied at Harvard University, the University of Oxford, and the University of Chicago, where she received a PhD in English in 1997.

She is the author of the poetry collections Mz N: the serial: A Poem-in-Episodes (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016); This Blue (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014), a finalist for the 2014 National Book Award; World Enough (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010); and Same Life (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008).

McLane is also known for her work in literary criticism and scholarship, focusing on British romanticism and the history of English poetry. She coedited The Cambridge Companion to British Romantic Poetry (Cambridge University Press, 2008) and is the author of Balladeering, Minstrelsy, and the Making of British Romantic Poetry (Cambridge University Press, 2008), as well as the hybrid book of memoir and criticism My Poets (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012), which was a finalist for the 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award. 

McLane has previously taught at Harvard University, MIT, and the East Harlem Poetry Project, and she served on the board of the National Book Critics Circle from 2007 to 2010. She has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a National Book Critics Circle’s Balakian Award for Excellence in Book Reviewing and a Rhodes Scholarship. She currently serves as a professor of English at New York University and lives in New York City.


Bibliography

Poetry
Mz N: the serial: A Poem-in-Episodes (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016)
This Blue (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014)
World Enough (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010)
Same Life (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008)

Prose
My Poets (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012)
Balladeering, Minstrelsy, and the Making of British Romantic Poetry (Cambridge University Press, 2008)

Horoscope

Again the white blanket 			
icicles pierce.
The fierce teeth
of steel-framed snowshoes
bite the trail open.
Where the hardwoods stand
and rarely bend
the wind blows hard
an explosion of snow
like flour dusting
the baker in a shop
long since shuttered.
In this our post-shame century
we will reclaim
the old nouns
unembarrassed. 
If it rains 
we'll say oh
there's rain.
If she falls
out of love
with you you'll carry
your love on a gold plate
to the forest and bury it
in the Indian graveyard.
Pioneers do not
only despoil.
The sweet knees
of oxen have pressed
a path for me.
A lone chickadee
undaunted thing
sings in the snow.			 
Flakes appear
as if out of air
but surely they come
from somewhere
bearing what news
from the troposphere.
The sky's shifted
and Capricorns abandon
themselves to a Sagittarian
line. I like
this weird axis.
In 23,000 years
it will become again
the same sky
the Babylonians scanned.

Copyright © 2011 by Maureen McLane. Used with permission of the author.

Copyright © 2011 by Maureen McLane. Used with permission of the author.

Maureen N. McLane

Maureen N. McLane

Maureen N. McLane is the author of the poetry collections Mz N: the serial: A Poem-in-Episodes (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016). She lives in New York City.

by this poet

poem

         If we belonged 
to the dead, if we had our own
Egyptian culture of care—
the amulets of home entombed
for solace everywhere—
would we then have found
a better way to cast beyond
the merely given earth?
         If you want to follow me
you'd better leave
poem

What I'm looking for
is an unmarked door
we'll walk through
and there: whatever
we'd wished for
beyond the door.

What I'm looking for
is a golden bowl
carefully repaired
a complete world sealed
along cracked lines.

What I'm looking for
may not

poem
little moth
I do not think you'll escape
this night

I do not think
you'll escape this night
little moth

               *

bees in clover
summer half over
friends without lovers

               *

I bite a carrot
horsefly bites me

               *

I thought it was you
moving through the trees

but it was the