Stella Corso is the author of the poetry collections Green Knife (Rescue Press, 2023) and TANTRUM (Rescue Press, 2017) along with chapbooks Taboo Vivant (blush lit, 2022) and Wind & the Augur (Sixth Finch, 2021). She is a founding member of the Connecticut River Valley Poets' Theater (CRVPT) and the current Managing Editor of Denver Quarterly and FIVES.
October 24, 2023
Framed on the wall of our mordant modern living, Stella Corso’s evocative second collection, Green Knife, hangs firmly askew. In this annular and focused suite of poems, the flaneur’s gaze is provoked by—and attuned to—its caustic surroundings: a therapist comparing their client to a painting; a subject reflecting on numerous imagined projections; our speaker walking around and around it all (as if in an exhibition hall), cataloguing how humanity's absurdity shifts and blooms based on the eye’s moods. With humor and heart, and with an acerbically piercing tone, Corso claims the world “is alive and well. If you care / to look." We just have to be willing to “submit to the image // with courage.”
November 1, 2017
Like the most formidable silver-screen comediennes, Stella Corso’s debut collection Tantrum is at once incisive and generous, candid and performative, full of coos and barbed truths. “I like that I can be a little dumb with you,” one poem murmurs before delivering a shattering assessment of a woman undermined by her lover. Wry and deliberately feminine, Tantrum makes a riposte to many things: capitalism, chauvinism, even William Carlos Williams. (Reading this book is a bit like watching Corso teasingly feed Williams the plums pilfered from the icebox, pits and all.) Self-possessed, self-indicting, Corso’s speakers unflinchingly explore the complex of rights and wrongs undergirding contemporary first-world femininity: “I turned away from my ambivalence / toward my proof, my receipt // I said I’m sorry / I am just a woman on vacation // I knew all events had led up to this.” Corso’s lively eye also inspects the mesh of nature and performance, art and decadence, ideas and things: “I go out into the field in my bikini / though there is no one there to see me,” “I put on my sleep mask / and see stars.”