Sarabande Books, 2019. 91 pages.

Reviewed by Aza Pace

In selecting Chad Bennett’s debut poetry collection for the Kathryn A. Morton Prize in Poetry, Ocean Vuong calls the book an “ark of queer embodiment and thought” that insists “a writer’s most tenable lineage is one he must make for himself.” The deceptively quiet poems in Your New Feeling is the Artifact of a Bygone Era playfully invite a wide cast of characters into the same room, nimbly connecting literary and pop culture figures like Shirley Temple, Roland Barthes, Gertrude Stein, and Patsy Cline. At once daring, humorous, and tender, these poems show the mind at work exploring what it means to live in the body, to desire and be desired. As they forge their own literary tradition and reach out toward an absent “you” that evolves in meaning throughout the collection, these poems maintain, “What we have is small / and strange. But