The Ghost Forest: New and Selected Poems

“An evocative braided autobiography in poetry that welcomes miscellany and disorder …. and reveals a mind as vast as the terrains it traverses.” —Nicole Sealey, The Poetry Foundation

Opening with 43 new formally inventive poems and leading the reader back in time through selections from her ten previous volumes, The Ghost Forest offers a contemplative and haunting narrative of a writer’s artistic journey through craft and form while illuminating personal themes influenced by her Japanese American heritage. Exploring the mysteries of science, nature and the experiences of contemporary womanhood, Hahn both reinvents classic Japanese forms such as the zuihitsu and tanka and experiments with traditional Western ones, among them the villanelle, sestina, and glosa. Braided into the poems and narrative thread, a series of photos transforms the new-and-selected into a hybrid autobiography. Like the titular forest, this arresting collection derives new beauty from long-gone remnants.

Mother crafted Christmas ornaments:
glue and glitter and red balls.
No tinsel, no angels.
Her death started in the living room.
— From “The Ashes”