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Published 2023 by Nirala Publications

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“A beautiful book, at turns tender, wry, and heartbreaking.” -  Saïd Sayrafiezadeh

“You close this visionary book with a sense that things destroyed can also be put back together, that a fine and canny calibration of light in relation to dark may not rescue the planet but could save our souls.” - Natania Rosenfeld

“A work of subtle resistance... a poetic pilgrimage that travels through the heart of uncertainty to compassionate acceptance of one’s internal universe, the world, and its mysterious ways.” - Tina Cane


American poet Ruth Danon hates and fears the cold in all its forms:  literal, metaphorical, external, internal.  In Turn Up the Heat she ventures into the chill and explores as well as its problematic opposite. In poems that range widely in form and style and that travel through place and time, Danon introduces us to St. Anthony, who stole fire from the devil and heated the icy desert, and heretic and genius Giordano Bruno, whose prescient astronomical vision led him led him to be burned at the stake. As she moves from Renaissance Italy to modern Sardinia and frosty upstate New York, from the desert to the domestic, Danon's peregrinations occur within the context of our own times: of a planet grown increasingly hot, a pandemic as cruel as an inquisition, of hotheaded and often coldhearted politics of America, as she contends with personal loneliness, isolation, guilt, and longing. How, she asks us, can we make and find the fire that warms, sustains, and illumines us?    

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Published 2018 by Nirala Publications

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"Ruth Danon gives us one of her most darkly oracular works. . . . .The poems are acid,ingenious, and unsentimental." –- Andrew Levy, editor, Resist Much, Obey Little

"Deep and skeptical, natural and magical, melancholic and beautiful, Danon’s oracle makes a truly compelling statement – one to be heeded, one to be savored."  –- Stephen Massimilla,, author, The Plague Doctor in His Hull Shaped Hat and Cooking with the Muse

"Ruth Danon’s extraordinary poems take us directly into states of feeling and perception that are subtle and profound. . . These are necessary poems."  -– Chase Twichell, author, Horses Where the Answers Should Have Been (winner of Kingsley Tufts Award)

Word Has It, by American poet Ruth Danon, takes on the unease that has accompanied the troubling politics that have created so much disturbance in the last few years. The book launches the reader into a journey marked by foreboding and innuendo. In the first section the speaker proceeds on an uneasy path while a character named “Word,” referring to herself in the third person, offers acerbic commentary along the way. In the second section the speaker retreats first into the domestic, then to a deeper interiority in which a journey through the rooms of a house embodies a study of various states of consciousness that lead her to the recognition of her role as a poet. By the end of the second section the speaker in ready to leave the interior space and venture into the third section, where she takes on the daunting poetic task of augury. The foreboding of the first section culminates in the violence that has been hinted at all along.

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Published 2022 by Cave Moon Press
Edited by Carol Alexander & Stephen Massimilla 

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In this timely and timeless collection, remarkable poets—both emerging and established—bring myriad traditions, styles, and vital perspectives to pressing questions, such as how poetry can help us to overcome obstacles to empowerment, compassion, social change, and educational opportunity. Drawing from the work of teachers, artists, and activists, Stronger Than Fear moves us into sudden and startling awareness. These poems arrive at their truths with insight and generosity, with courage and spirit.

Sales benefit the Malala Fund to help empower global education for girls.

Published 2015 by BlazeVOX

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"By investigating the minutiae of life--the stuff that anchors us, a stone and its echo, paradoxes constructed by language--Ruth Danon investigates nothing short of Thanatos and Eros. The journey of the LIMITLESS TINY BOAT is fierce and fearless. Watch out! These poems expand and contract--breathe--as they are read. A substantial achievement." --Martine Bellen


"Ruth Danon seems to gather all of life into her LIMITLESS TINY BOAT--or to explore every corner, every inch of the limitless, tiny boat that is life. In these flawlessly sculpted, deeply considered and compelling poems, Danon probes the machinery of life--how it sputters, hums along, gets stuck, stops, then restarts, hums along again. She shows how we must reckon with the terrors and consolations of the physical world, make an existential tally, and move on. 'Words are / the only boat I have, ' she writes. And then, 'Really the trick is to estimate / from here, the journey outward.' This book is a beautiful reckoning, an astute tallying, and a profound journey through the dark and bright corridors that make up a life." --Laura Sims


"I've been reading Ruth Danon's poetry for many years, always with pleasure. She is one of the most honest and affecting poets on the current scene, a writer more than willing to take deep emotional risks, bringing the reader close the flame. She says she is 'lucky knowing / that everything tends / to a particular moment' in her latest collection. I suspect that much of her work as a poet has tended toward the moments gathered in LIMITLESS TINY BOAT. It's important work, and Danon takes us far beyond the fringes of thought and feeling."--Jay Parini


"Like any passageway between the profane and the sacred, Ruth Danon's poems keep looking for home: 'Words are the only boat I have, ' she writes in her second collection, LIMITLESS TINY BOAT. Danon's voice is intimate, wary, disarming, alive with intelligence and 'the extreme urgency of patience.' Though she claims that 'three lines suggests a narrative, ' she also admits that 'Narrative eludes me...' The material facts of a body in pain, in danger, in love find expression in the book's central sequence, a meditation that swerves from a 'small cooking pot' to peristalsis: 'The rose opens and closes its little mouth.' As in the book's title, contradictions abound: what is called 'tiny' is also 'limitless' in these profound itineraries that float between story and song, hope and hopelessness, mind and body."--Catherine Barnett


"Ruth Danon's poems manage to fuse seemingly irreconcilable qualities: they are both erudite and colloquial; concerned with ideas yet frankly personal; they have the reach of abstraction while also being tactile and concrete. The result is a shimmering originality that makes LIMITLESS TINY BOAT a marvel to read."--Jennifer Egan

Published 1990 by North Star Line

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"Ruth Danon layers disparate voices -- from the impersonally oracular to the colloquially funny -- as if in three dimensions, and by their echoes we can place ourselves with surprising accuracy." - Ann Beattie

"Ruth Danon's poems are full of wonder and quiet thoughtfulness. What is deepest about them is their clarity adn their various tones of voice. They probe and unfold. The urgency of the poems is melodic, inviting." - Michael Burkard

Triangulation from a Known Point signals the appearance of an important new voice in contemporary poetry. It is an exhilarating book, full of poems that blaze in memory long after the book is closed. 

This book is Ruth Danon's first collection, though her poems have been widely published during the past decade in leading periodicals, such as The New England Review, The Boston Review, the Paris Review, and Tendril. As a poet, Danon brings to her work a remarkable force of intelligence, wit and -- most importantly -- passion.

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