Winner of the 2021 Idaho Prize! Preorder now from Lost Horse Press. Ships September 15, 2022.

“This is a terrific book of poems.” — Ilya Kaminsky

The Blinding Star

Selected poems of Blanca Varela

Winner of the 2022 Northern California Book Award California Translation Prize

“Twelve years after her death, Lisa Allen Ortiz and Sara Daniele Rivera offer us this glimpse into a long and teeming encounter with black Varela. Their translations, nothing short of devotions, carry a flaring, complex, compressed and spacious lyric forged in time by time.” —Aracelis Girmay


Guide to the Exhibit

Winner of the 2016 Perugia Press Prize!

“These poems come to you urgent, rushing and controlled from a wide-open heart. A splendid debut.” — Thomas Lux

“In language that is spare, precise, and at times wonderfully, subtly strange, Ortiz works in the overlap between self and world, showing us that time does not honor human consciousness, nor even recognize it. Yet the world is all we have, and what we are is part of it. We are not its masters, and the attempt to hold onto things by saving, describing, and labeling them, is doomed. We’ll lose what we love. This hard-won understanding is the tough heart of this piercing, memorable book, which, like any memorial, is simultaneously a celebration of life and an elegy.” — Chase Twichell


Self Portrait as a Clock
Finishing Line Press, 2013

“Don’t let the gorgeous music, with its echoes of Plath and Dickinson, soothe you; these are elegant, unnerving snapshots— both praise and lament— of what A. R. Ammons calls poetry’s one real subject: ‘impermanence…'” —Catherine Barnett


Turns Out
Main Street Rag Press, 2011

“These are poems whose relics are at once fantastical and familiar, secretly hopeful and sensuously rich, that illuminate the profound, tenuous truth we may always have suspected, but before reading Lisa’s poems didn’t quite know how to voice: we are ‘lightly connected/ to everything.'” — Robin Ekiss