Mummer Prisoner Scavenger Thief


by Chris Ransick


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mummer: a person acting in a masked mime
prisoner: a person trapped by a set of circumstances
scavenger: a person who collects abandoned items
thief: a person who takes things by stealth, without force or violence

This collection begins in the realm of the mummer whose masked performance conceals the self and transforms language to better evoke what is too risky to speak overtly. Ransick’s poems ply this tension between knowing and speaking in cadence and imagery that simultaneously disorients readers and beckons them forward, in lines whose half-remembered music refuses to be predictable. The role of the shunned figures in the title is to draw poems out from the margins of experience, to reclaim voices muted by more powerful forces, an elusive goal only the best poetry can accomplish. Travel along with them as guides, ready to steal and scavenge what you need for your own escape.

Category: Product ID: 3423

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Conundrum Press









6 x 9

Publication Date


The Author

Chris Ransick

Chris Ransick

Chris Ransick, Denver Poet Laureate from 2006-2010, is an award winning author of five books of poetry and fiction, most recently Language for the Living and the Dead (2013). He has worked as a journalist, editor, professor, and speaker, and has served on his city's public library board, his state's humanities board of directors, and on the PEN Freedom to Write Committee. His first book, Never Summer, won a 2003 Colorado Book Award for Poetry and all his titles are available in new editions from Conundrum Press. Since 2005, Chris has been a faculty member and Book Project Mentor at Lighthouse Writers Workshop, Denver's reknowned independent creative writing school, which awarded him the 2013 Beacon Award for Teaching Excellence. Chris Ransick passed away in 2019.

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