Your Ten Favorite Words by Reb Livingston

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ISBN 978-0-6151-6182-2
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What People Are Saying About Your Ten Favorite Words

What used to be called “the war between the sexes” is now being duked out with great passion and finesse by Reb Livingston in this collection of take-no-prisoners poems. In Your Ten Favorite Words no one is let off the hook, least of all the feisty scribe herself. You know you badly need to read poems in which a 21st century Red Riding Hood declares, “I bide my time sipping seltzer with the/animal meant to gobble Grandma.” You know you cannot live without a book that contains a glacier named “Lucas’s Ejaculation,” section titles like “Our Rascal Asses,” “bitchy, home-wrecking wraiths and dirty, train-hopping banshees” and speakers who make comments such as, “Accept your inner leprosy.” Sassy, freaky, comic, vulnerable, and to use one of her very own neologisms “gleefullized” Reb Livingston’s poems are a shot in the arm and a throb in the brain, a rebellious erotics of language, an irrepressible manifesto of the vagaries of the libido, complete with deep mischievousness and dark misgivings. If you’ve been wondering where poems by the next generation of whip smart, tender/tough women can be found: Eureka! A book full of them is right here.

–Amy Gerstler, author of Ghost Girl, Medicine and Crown of Weeds

Steeped country road, hard pew truck cab tangy twangy half-tuned static yearn, Victoriana clutch, party line spill, burlesqued male beauty tied to the tracks, two-tone tongue-in-cheek cherry-stem chains, long strong looker on, trans-Atlantic crosstown snigger, formal knotless knicker dropped or drooped, mother-poor and father-proof, Reb Livingston writes the griftingest orphan in the chorus line, with a heart of coal and canaries.

–Danielle Pafunda, author of Pretty Young Things and My Zorba

Reb Livingston, a poet of whimsical intelligence and daring grace, writes poems both naughty and nice. With breathy, brisk eroticism and long-lasting passion for the language, these poems dance and sing like a good-sounding drunk. Let them love you and you'll never get their seedy taste out of your mouth.

–Lorna Dee Cervantes, CU Boulder, author of Drive: The First Quartet

Reviews of Your Ten Favorite Words

The strange telling throughout Your Ten Favorite Words — encompassing both major and minor themes — embraces language’s ability to create wonder and capture truth. Livingston mines memory and the moment to capture her varying tones (as priest, healer, medic, or manic) depending on the poem and the context, which are both utterly unpredictable. Cutting through the poetic voice is the poet’s humor, lurking around every corner, around every one of your favorite words.

-Craig Santos Perez, read entire review here

Your Ten Favorite Words is a smart, funny, angry and very adult book of poems about the power and pitfalls of eros, about the ways in which men and women stumble into one another, and about the fall-out from those collisions.

-Tom Beckett, read entire review here

Reb Livingston knows how to have a good time and in this saucy collection of poems, she expounds on a few recollections with the same jazzy fun that probably caused them. I like her obvious enjoyment of words, how she teases them into a poem then has her way with them.
-Cheryl A. Townsend, read entire review here