Travelogues: vignettes from trains in motion, my debut poetry chapbook recording nine train journeys, was published in October 2020, and is now available from Brain Jar Press and other websites listed on Brain Jar’s page.
“Travelogues: Vignettes From Trains in Motion is a poet’s plunge into an oil-slickered, shadow-hung, ivy-clung alternate reality. Jennings’ world is deeply familiar and ultimately alien: a world minutely observed, in fast forward, warped by fairy lenses. Her reflections are relentless, ecstatic, declamatory, are illuminated motion. This whole metaphorical journey-by-rails is a fantasia, a phantasm, at times wistful, at others muscular and machine-like, with the occasional wry aside about the terribleness of the coffee. “Hello, book!” I want to shout. “I know you! And yet, I have never met your like.” Let’s never get to Salisbury. Let this train ride never end.”
– C. S. E. Cooney, World Fantasy Award-winning author of Bone Swans: Stories
“Travelogues: Vignettes From Trains in Motion tracks between fairytale forest and human industry, refiguring the railway through the tender wildness of the everyday. Delightfully unexpected in their metaphors, as wrought in sound as in image, these poems embody our attention and our daydreams—casting new light, new shadows. Jennings makes magic of the detail and colour of the quotidian world, where a cluster of rust-wrecked cars are kindred with autumn leaves, where a bare tree twins curves of concrete, where a train is a knife slicing through butter-and-honey light. Nearly there, nearly there. A world at work, remade through window and motion. And further.”
– Shastra Deo, Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize winning author of The Agonist
How can people work on trains? Read on trains? There is so much happening outside!
With these words, World Fantasy and Hugo Award-nominated artist Kathleen Jennings opens the door to a graceful, nuanced world of travel vignettes. With an affinity for words that’s equal to her celebrated artwork, Jennings captures the passing landscape with an illustrator’s eye for detail and a poet’s command of rich language and startling metaphors.
Originally published over the span of three years while travelling across Massachusetts, New York State, and England, Travelogues collects Kathleen’s travel vignettes together for the first time.
Each of these nine journeys is infused with wonder and rich, unfamiliar landscapes, and those who climb aboard will forever look at train travel with new eyes.