I am tired of people taking language from the Bible out of context and using it as a weapon against other people, so I started taking language from the Bible out of context and using it to create art. My process was to use the last chapter from one book of the Bible as a word bank for each poem. This is either the most heretical or the most reverent thing I’ve ever written.
A Door with a Voice is available as a free download from Agape Editions.
“I love this clipped voice—just the essentials—eclectic, irreverently reverent, or is it reverently irreverent—”
—Diane Glancy, author of Report to the Department of the Interior and over 40 books of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and plays
“Scholars and theologians have been discussing the function and power of Biblical language for much of the last hundred years. Some have called for a de-mythologizing of how we understand Scripture, so that the original power and glory of the language of God can be experienced, renewing our awe and wonder. During this time, it has fallen to poets to try to craft this new language, to de-mytholgize texts with thousands of years of dogma and interpretation behind them. Into that fray wades Katie Manning. With clever excisions and deft lineation, Manning reinvigorates our understanding, our sense of what might be happening in those passages we know can’t be as simple as we hear every Sunday. From ‘The Book of Verbs’: ‘listen / my womb // do not spend your strength / on kings // it is not for kings // crave / and / let / be.’ Breathing new life into Scriptural language, finding the poetry within, is no easy task. Manning shows us a way, a vast, gorgeous poetry within those words we think we know.”
—Thom Caraway, editor of Rock & Sling