Apples or Pomegranates published by Porkbelly Press
Apples or Pomegranates is an intimate exploration of the spirit housed inside a body, the failings and the strength in each. Sometimes erotic and at other times full of another kind of wanting, this micro chapbook delves into the experience of living boldly, step by step along the path—”a tight-rope walking girl, a pit of lions beneath.” This is the route she takes on these pages, hand out, palm up, if you’ve courage enough to join her.
Apples and Pomegranates unravels and interrogates a universe set on its denial of the body feminine. Artistic canon, the expectations and consequences of relationships, biology itself, and even language (its translation or mistranslation) are called into light by Koester’s words. “Travelling the fallopian tubes of the Milky Way” is a tender prospect in every sense of the word. Koester’s command of passion and utterance is that kind of double-edged wonder.
—Keith S. Wilson
Arrow Songs published by Paper Nautilus Press
In Arrow Songs, Anita Olivia Koester, takes the lyric and uses it as an arrow to pierce the heart. Her poems thrum with loss, with grief, with lust, and the hunger to locate the voice amid a quotidian chaos. She remembers the past, dreams the present, and attempts to envision a future where healing is possible. To find our way there we must, like these poems, sing.
"ARROW SONGS is what becomes of Cupid’s arrow once the target has been hit and the flesh is open to receive—it is the body in the rapture and injury of love. There is music throughout—repetition, refrains, alliteration, that assonance that keens, the grief that seems to lullaby, the desire so insistent you listen, you follow, you let the beat shape you. In these heartbreakingly beautiful poems “no one is ever lost, only transformed.”
- Arisa White
Author of You're The Most Beautiful Thing That Happened
This chapbook is no longer available
Marco Polo published by Hermeneutic Chaos Press
In Marco Polo, Anita Olivia Koester weaves a vivid landscape in which the readers halt and confront secrets, truths, hesitations, realizations and reckonings of the memories of past and the present that heave and swell with the power of Koester's language.
Lush with an imagery that is simultaneously familiar and unsettling, the narrative discovers the perfect form for evoking the impact of time, place and history on the lives of human beings.
"The mark of a good poem is the poem that makes you want to write. These muscled, aching poems full of loss, love, and the birthing of the true self, are poems that will make you drop to your knees and pick up the pen again. Here is a necessary voice that's found its way down the mountain to bellow full-throttle at last."
- Ada Limón
Author of Bright Dead Things