You/Wee: Poems from a Father by Sidney Thompson


About the Book:
Poets such as Beth Ann Fennelly have explored the evocative, transformative nature of motherhood, but where is the fatherhood companion? Sidney Thompson generously answers with You/Wee—eighteen poems addressed prayer-like to his first-born daughter.

Thompson serves as witness to his daughter’s conception, her birth, and her discoveries into toddlerhood, in addition to his own developments and discoveries as a father and child. The mother’s experience, too, is a source of wonder in Thompson’s work: “the girl oh I hope’s within her,” he writes, “is within you, so you, too, may survive/ one revolution after another.”

These poems are songs authenticated by a precision so keen they must, in their candor, allow for the elusiveness of joy, the unease of affinity, its vigilance and expectation. You/Wee may begin “when the world is puddle-wonderful,” as E.E. Cummings simultaneously describes spring and childhood in “[in Just-],” but it progresses into a tangle of life’s and love’s most mature complexities, as it should, to reach beyond reach, both “far and wee.”

About the Poet:
Sidney Thompson earned an MFA in fiction from the University of Arkansas and a PhD in American fiction/African-American narratives from the University of North Texas. He lives in Fort Worth with his wife, Sara, a doula, and their four children and serves as a Writing Consultant for the William L. Adams Center for Writing at Texas Christian University, where he also teaches creative writing and African-American literature. Sydney Emerson, his first biological child, inspired this return to poetry, his first love.

Praise for Sidney Thompson:
“Thompson’s book You/Wee offers us lyric narratives on early fatherhood, childhood, and the dawn of some mysterious exchange. The poetry’s gift resides in how freely it moves from wit to wonder, from the quotidian and small, the messy even, to their more magnanimous embodiment in our affections. A truly moving collection.” —Bruce Bond, author of Frankenstein’s Children and Choir of the Wells

“Thompson’s huge-hearted poems are filled with magic and wonder. From a prayer whispered to the daughter through the mother’s moon belly to, after her birth, the toddler’s first words, and first scar, the adoration and tenderness in these poems is unflinching. You/Wee is an incredibly moving, brilliant look at fatherhood.” —Alex Lemon, author of Feverland: A Memoir in Shards and Another Last Day

“Thompson’s poetic tribute to his daughter invites us to share in the astonishing revelation of new life—and a rediscovery of the self. These poems rightfully encompass a vast terrain, as the powers of the female body are innumerable. What a gift Thompson has given us, celebrating, through verse, a family's genesis.” —Jenny Molberg, author of Marvels of the Invisible

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