Borderline Fortune

Winner of the National Poetry Series, Penguin, 2020


Sidebrow, 2013

Forever No Lo

Tarpaulin Sky, 2008

SIGNED COPIES available while supplies last:

Made in Milwaukie (Milwaukie, Oregon) Elliott Bay Book Co. (Seattle)Chevalier’s Books (Los Angeles)Left Bank Books (St. Louis) Green Apple Books (San Francisco)Weller Book Works (Salt Lake City)Tattered Cover (Denver)So & So Books (Raleigh)Bagatelle Books (Asheville)

Also available everywhere books are sold: Bookshop.orgPenguinAmazon B&N


Borderline Fortune is a poetry book with a voice in a dying world.” —NPR’s Bookworm
“Though short, these poems haunt at length.” —Amy Wang, The Oregonian

“Full of meditative and sharp lyric moments, these poems are alive with complexity and critique. Acoustically, they enact the swell and crash of water: ‘the wish/ you’d unwhisper,’ ‘friction/ on the flint.’ Thematically, they prod the undercurrents of society and the expectations of American life…These are valuable, urgent poems of witness.” Publishers Weekly

“Miller will be a new and invigorating voice, fully conversant with the ambiguities of our present day.” Library Journal

“I’m so impressed with this new book, with the condensation of syntax, the music, the interior rhyme and off-rhyme, echoey sequences, and the ethical and aesthetic insistence on a lack of resolution. I’m fascinated by the way the ‘you’ to whom so many of the poems are directed begins to take on aspects of a landscape. In fact, all through the book, the nonhuman and the human seem to be merging. W. S. Merwin implied that elegy is always written for someone who can’t read it, but Miller’s poems suggest that elegy is a modality that can conjure presence again and that the poem resurrects the dead in some sense.” —Forrest Gander, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, on Borderline Fortune at the Montana Book Festival

“In Borderline Fortune, Teresa K. Miller claws her way to and through her subject—loss in the form of ‘shrapnel and good intention.’ Miller discovers in the going, in the moment when we remember that ‘every river had a first day to flow.’ We are given that first day, no matter what comes after.” —David Romtvedt, National Poetry Series–winning author of A Flower Whose Name I Do Not Know and Dilemmas of the Angels

“The poems in Borderline Fortune are so sharply crafted, they serve as the pick and axe that dig deep into the granite of the past and shape a world created from the knowledge and the mythology Miller has extracted.” —Elmaz Abinader, author of This House, My Bones and cofounder of VONA

“Teresa K. Miller weaves together transcendent astonishments. Borderline Fortune is not a book that solves a problem, but a book that creates a net, a thing made of both solidity & gaps, open enough to be pulled through the dangers, strong enough to haul a body up to the air.” —Mathias Svalina, creator of the Dream Delivery Service and author of The Wine-Dark Sea

“Teresa K. Miller explores startling territories in Borderline Fortune. She addresses the lines we’ve drawn and erased for centuries on the earth—that conform to the borders we cross and uncross in the mind. Blake, Dickinson, and Hopkins’ Terrible Sonnets hover (‘birds build—but not I build’), above trees cut down and hope with feathers—but Miller remains radiantly elusive, an escape artist in these marvelous poems of altered terra firma and revelation.” —Carol Muske-Dukes, National Poetry Series judge and author of Blue Rose

“In the end, the poems form a landscape we must immerse ourselves in, their movement as dark and unpredictable as the ocean or tectonic plates, and their story one we don’t navigate as much as survive.” —Laura Walker, author of swarm lure

“Weaving these individual threads into a single plait, Miller’s form highlights her expansive entanglements, as well as her singular focused journey through mourning…What a gripping debut Sidebrow Books in San Francisco has recently released.” —Katrina Roberts on sped, Los Angeles Review of Books

“In sped’s last units, when many of the themes of the book begin to be drawn together, you learn that you have absorbed the fragments and made them whole inside you without fully knowing it.” —Dennis James Sweeney on sped, Tarpaulin Sky

“Miller’s elderly woman on a bus, salutation to a love one, and Iraq War carnage described above all fit together so eerily well—so well that Miller’s implicit suggestion is that these consciousnesses and events not only can belong together, they can be and really are fused. More so than through simple webs of causality, Miller’s chosen events are so compacted they become interior to each other, already dependent in this new arrangement…Miller’s Forever No Lo is a sleeper success—wide reaching and bold.” —Haines Eason on Forever No Lo, American Book Review 

3 responses to “Books”

  1. […] some generous words on Borderline Fortune from poet Laura […]

  2. […] I also appreciate all of you who have bought a copies of Borderline Fortune (especially from your favorite local independent bookstore!), recommended it to a friend, and shared something about it on social media. If you like what […]

  3. […] to support independent bookstores (and there should still be some signed copies available from these indie sellers), but a lot of readers find new titles via those other sites. It only takes a minute and a couple […]

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