DEBRA NYSTROM is the author of four poetry collections: A Quarter Turn (Sheep Meadow Press), Torn Sky, Bad River Road (Sarabande), and Night Sky Frequencies (Sheep Meadow Press). Her work has received the James Dickey Award, the Balch Poetry Award, and the James Boatwright III Prize for Poetry. She teaches in the Creative Writing Program at The University of Virginia.
“Debra Nystrom’s poems are like prairie grass bending in the wind and living off of nothing. Night Sky Frequencies contains a stark human story of two abandoned children—Will and Ellie—whose darker hair and skin make them aware of differences. This is the story of their lives. If you listen closely, beyond the hard-caked land, the parched air, and the oceanic loneliness, you will hear a harmonica playing. The night sky glistens with constellations. And something pure is being lifted out of nothingness.”—Henri Cole
“Debra Nystrom touches chords, with these intense, quiet, passionate and mostly brief poems, that are rarely touched so lucidly and with so little self-consciousness in contemporary American poetry—the chords of painful, and sometimes joyful, truths about ourselves, and ourselves with others. From a whole heart she has fashioned a whole book, a stunning and beautiful book.”—Thomas Lux
“The project of Debra Nystrom’s poetry isn’t merely to recapture and modulate experience, but to come to terms with it, to redeem it, in a radical way. Her poems attempt to gentle the intractable emotions of becoming an adult, and to reconceive the turbulent, disturbing raw materials of responsible maturity. To read her is to watch a consciousness being created, and a conscience of demanding rigor and special sensitivity and grace.”—C. K. Williams