Relics and Rituals
poems by Tracy Ross
Relics and Rituals is a journey through the possibilities of experience and brings the mind to light as an uncharted frontier. Each poem, whether it be with the broad strokes of allegory immersed in personal quest or small epiphanies in slice-of-life portrayals, treats the human condition as an open question that begs examination and transforms the ordinary with leaps of intuitive exploration. Ultimately, Relics and Rituals, like much of Ross’s work, touches on the psychological implications of humanity at large and uses the lens of verse and metaphor to illuminate the conditions we experience as a collective. We carry physical artifacts as evidence of our existence to mark our presence in time's continuum. We use habits of behavior and the rituals of daily life embedded in the passages of time to somehow help us cope with impermanence. But time goes forward . . . and the writer types faster . . . only leaving ellipses on the page . . .
POETRY / General
ISBN: 978-1-956056-52-5 (print; softcover; perfect bound)
Released July 2022
Along with Relics and Rituals, Tracy Ross’s books include Broken Signals, James Dean and the Beautiful Machine (Shanti Arts, 2018 and 2020), and Certainty of One—A Tale of Education Automation (Adelaide Press, 2018). Ross’s first collection of short stories, Binary Logic (Between the Lines Publishing), will be released in late 2022. She has been published in Memoir Magazine, Wayne Literary Review, Sublunary Review, and Author Magazine. She has received a McKnight grant for her work from the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council. Living in Chicago, the Motor City, Minneapolis, and the Boundary Waters Forest area of Ely, Minnesota, Ross is both a city and country mouse, enamored with both the electric lights of city neon at night and the aurora borealis of the north country. As part of her research for her next poetry collection on Nikola Tesla, she sat in the rain and watched the lightning strike. Fortunately, she sat under a tree and finished the work, which will be coming out in 2023. She is currently working on a project of non-fiction, incorporating memes in popular culture with the principles of self discovery, technology, and scientific innovation. When she is not writing, she is teaching and pursuing her PhD.
“Tracy Ross’s Relics and Rituals dwells in contrasting juxtapositions—heaven and hell, those who walk away from floods and those left behind to swim, the part of the house bustling with active people and the quiet place where darkness requires attention. This work is rich in rhyme and crackles with images and ideas and resonates as Ross tries ‘to right every wrong by pushing the compass north with the conviction of [her] core.’ A spectacular collection, noteworthy for its candor and realness.”
“Relics and Rituals celebrates the habits of mind and the passages of time with dark imagination and striking imagery, paying homage to human perseverance, triumph, and courage.”
“Tracy Ross's Relics and Rituals takes you on a journey that exposes the depths below the everyday—‘the sad underworld beneath your shoes.’ Ross's sonorous language and evocative imagery compel you to see what lies hidden, to grapple with buried truths.”
“Relics and Rituals is a brave reckoning with the world as it is—a world filled with the pressures of the mundane and the forces of greed—individual and collective. It is a reminder that our survival depends on each other, on seeing and hearing, documenting and witnessing the erasure, the neglect, and the hurt that is present in our lives."
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