What Is Otherwise Infinite

Bianca Stone

Written in four divs with incisive and vivid lyrical language, Bianca Stone’s What Is Otherwise Infinite considers how we find our place in the world through themes of philosophy, religion, environment, myth, and psychology. “I deal only in the hardest pain-revivers, symbols and tongues,” writes Stone. “I want to tell you only / in the intimacy of our discomfort.” 

Populated by Archangels, limping in paradise; by allergies of the soul; the intimacy and danger of motherhood; psychic wounds; and dirty, dirty chocolate layer cake, What Is Otherwise Infinite deftly examines our inherent and inherited ideas of how to live, and the experience of the Self—which on one hand is so intensely personal, and on the other, universal.

The Mobius Strip Club of Grief

Bianca Stone

The Möbius Strip Club of Grief is a collection of poems that take place in a burlesque purgatory where the living pay—dearly, with both money and conscience—to watch the dead perform scandalous acts otherwise unseen: “$20 for five minutes. I’ll hold your hand in my own,” one ghost says. “I’ll tell you you were good to me.” Like Dante before her, Stone positions herself as the living poet passing through and observing the land of the dead. She imagines a feminist Limbo where women run the show and create a space to navigate the difficulties endured in life. With a nod to her grandmother Ruth Stone’s poem “The Mobius Strip of Grief,” Stone creates a labyrinthine underworld as a way to confront and investigate complicated family relationships in the hopes of breaking the never-ending cycle of grief.

Someone Else’s Wedding Vows

Bianca Stone

Someone Else’s Wedding Vows reflects on the different forms of love, which can be both tremendously joyous and devastatingly destructive. The title poem confronts a human ritual of marriage from the standpoint of a wedding photographer. Within the tedium and alienation of the ceremony, the speaker grapples with a strange human hopefulness. In this vein, Stone explores our everyday patterns and customs, and in doing so, exposes them for their complexities. Drawing on the neurological, scientific, psychological, and even supernatural, this collection confronts the difficulties of love and family. Stone rankles with a desire to understand, but the questions she asks are never answered simply. These poems stroll along the abyss, pointing towards the absurdity of our choices. They recede into the imaginative in order to understand and translate the distressing nature of reality. It is a bittersweet question this book raises: Why we are like this? There is no easy answer. So while we look down at our hands, perplexed, Someone Else’s Wedding Vows raises a glass to the future.