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Rebecca Brock

The Way Land Breaks

by Rebecca Brock

ISBN: 9798987305843      $16.00 (Free US shipping)

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Rebecca Brock won The Comstock Review’s 2022 Muriel Craft Bailey Memorial Poetry Contest, the 2022 Kelsay Women’s Poetry Contest, and Sheila-Na-Gig online’s Editor’s Choice Award. Her work has been recognized and honored by Cutthroat: A Journal of the Arts, River Heron Review, and Whale Road Review. Her chapbook, Each Bearing Out (Kelsay Books 2022) was a semifinalist in the 2021 New Women’s Voices contest at Finishing Line Press. She holds an MFA in fiction from Bennington College. Her nonfiction essay about being a working flight attendant on 9/11 was published in the Threepenny Review and earned a Pushcart Honorable Mention. She has been a flight attendant for most of her adult life and is still surprised by this fact. Idaho born, she lives in Virginia with her family but takes them westward as often as she can. You can find more of her work at


In The Way Land Breaks, award-winning poet Rebecca Brock uses time—human and geological—as both anchor and engine. These poems are revelation and love song to a faltering world. The Way Land Breaks travels the Idaho foothills of Brock’s childhood, the sky she takes to as a flight attendant, her relationship with her mother and her sons, and the distances between. From diabetes to earthquakes, mushrooms to Mars Rovers, Robin Hood to Vera Bradley—Brock asks questions about the landscape of home, the landscapes we seek within one other. Using tangible imagery and honest language, Brock shows us how love takes hold in the modern blur of disorder and constant change.


“I never do trust / light to last, Rebecca Brock claims in her poem, “My Mother as the Sun.” But the light does last, like a lingering tropical sunset, in this incandescent collection. Whether Brock is writing about beloved members of her family or inhabitants of the natural world, she shines a radiant beam upon them, crafted with what seems like almost instinctual imagery, so the reader can view her subjects the way that she does. That light is joy; it is gratitude; it is honesty. And that perception continues to glow even when she writes about pain and hardship and moments that lesser poets might want to keep hidden. In The Way Land Breaks, light purifies. And Brock knows how to wield it as a blessing.”

—Jen Karetnick, author of The Burning Where Breath Used to Be
Founder and Managing Editor, SWWIM Magazine

“Rebecca Brock’s poems are birthed into a landscape of questions. As she seeks to understand the complicated relationships between mother and child, human and the natural world, the poet doesn’t propose trite answers. Instead, she offers “language / that cuts through / our inadequate tongues.” She writes of trees and tigers, mushrooms and marshmallows, dogs and birds, glaciers and stars, her mother and her sons, acknowledging “It’s not that nothing is beautiful / or true— / just that so many things are.” In carefully crafted, vulnerable poems, Brock attests that “looking too close at anything might prove / unbearable,” but she looks anyway, redeeming the bewildering aspects of relationships with wonder and deep love. She gathers “the things / that can’t be said” and fearlessly speaks them in this beautiful collection.”

—Sandy Coomer, author of The Broken Places
Founder and Director, Rockvale Writers’ Colony

“In richly detailed lyrics, Rebecca Brock considers life’s unconformities, applying a geological metaphor to life as a daughter, wife, and mother. From the American West, where unconformities are visible in rock formations, to the East Coast, and in the air above them, Brock’s observations and meditations invite her readers to travel with her into the landscapes of the soul.”

—Pat Valdata, author of Inherent Vice, Where No Man Can Touch, and Eve’s Daughters

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