Tightrope Books, Toronto, 2010
"Leanne Averbach's poems grab life by the lapels and never let go. They're political, sexy, meditative, elegiac. They crisscross boundaries from Vancouver to NYC, Havana to Venice, ransacking decades of memories that "peel us raw in a flash," "harnessing us to the bed." To read Come Closer is to take a ricocheting ride, worth every penny, from plastering Maoist posters on poles to chronicling the Blues, from Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse to "The Invention of Pornography." At the still centre of this verbal whirlwind, anchoring the collection, is the sequence of poems tracing the family history, from "Tchernovka to Pacific Hydrangea," "shtetl fear" to Vancouver prosperity, from "plaid/ suits the days of a big sale" to "a lifetime/ guarantee, expired."”
Ruth Pierson, GG Poetry Award winner
"The poems in Come Closer are meticulous, yet never precious—Averbach has a jeweler's eye and a scorpion wit—animated throughout by the sweep and grind and ferment of history. May you have an interesting life is sometimes uttered as a curse, but Averbach has alchemized the stuff of her own interesting lives into this blessing of a book."
Mark Bibbins, the New School, New York
Mansfield Press, Toronto, 2005
Erotic and absurdist, Leanne Averbach’s fever docu-rides a life examined through multifarious roles and experiences. Through her iconoclastic lens, life as a former left-wing activist and trade union organizer takes shape with indelible moments spent in factories or incarcerated in jail cells. Averbach’s work contains vivid tales of
love, family encounters, and the mad poetry of harsh international realities. With its unique blend of the personal and the political,
fever burns with the engagement of the most committed poetry.
“Witty, cynical and startlingly lusty, Averbach’s lushly lyrical, 'thick wet strokes' of irreverence are finely wrought with haunting immediacy. Her work provides a must-read collection: highly charged eroto-comic and compelling snapshots that linger.” —Adeena Karasick
Sample Poems: Fever - Abattoir - Internet Dating
Averbach’s poetry has appeared in the following publications:
Prism International, CV2, Best Canadian Poetry in English Anthology, Descant, The Fiddlehead, Grain, Poetry New Zealand, Poetry London, Court Green (Chicago), Sub-TERRAIN, The Smoking Poet, By-Words, MiPoesias, Arabesque (Paris-Tangiers), Seven Deadly Sins Anthology, Pottersfield Portfolio, Washington Square, Canadian Women’s Studies, Wayne County Review, Love in the Media Age Anthology, Poesia de-Amore (Italy), TheAntigonish Review, The New Quarterly, The Landmarks 2000 Project, and Poetry in Performance.