Through its interlinked poems, Letters of a Long Name narrates the difficult circumstances of a mother with an infant in NICU.
“To surrender one’s child—to thriving, to failure, to a life beyond the parental ‘maker’—is perhaps the business, the labor, of all poets. But in the raw, precarious, ‘naked lullabyes’ of Hanchey’s stunning book, the stakes of doing so are brought into fierce, urgent domestic intimacy. . . . With Penelope-like steadfastness, the speaker in these poems measures out her family’s imperiled days, months, and years of crisis not in Prufrock’s coffee spoons, but with a mother’s expressions of stock-piled breastmilk, faith, and prayer, kept alive by poetry’s vital abeyance and creation’s ultimate reward.”—Lisa Russ Spaar, Director of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia
“Hanchey’s writing broke my heart, then put it together again.”—Kurt Heinzelman, former Director of Creative Writing at the University of Texas
“I admire these poems for how they resist an easy narrative of redemption … and yet the poems are alight with bodily joy.”—Nancy Reddy, 2014 winner of the National Poetry Series