Making Maxine's Baby
Making Maxine’s Baby tells the story of Maxine, a homeless woman who lives in the New York City subway system. The book follows Maxine's surreal journey through city and memory as she attempts to overcome her traumatic past.
ON MAKING MAXINE’S BABY:
“Tracking her flight from the hell of feeling, Caroline Hagood's metaphors unfold with a desperado's inventiveness. Reeling with the book's unexpected turns, I'm reminded of Dickinson's razor-sharp observations of her own psyche and of Plath's acerbic wit. For all the diversity of its escape routes, Making Maxine's Baby reads like a single utterance. It wills us to train our attention not on the traumatic violation at the poems' source, but on the loneliness, wild creativity, and valor of survival.”
—Joan Larkin, poet & playwright
“This is a daring book, an odyssey written from within the consciousness of Maxine, a resident of New York City subway tunnels and survivor of repeated sexual abuse from the age of six. A notable achievement of this collection is Hagood’s ability to keep the reader steadily engaged with the mind of Maxine and her tortured drive toward freedom. This is a deeply-imagined, credible character who awakens the sympathy of readers as well as admiration for the cool tone and highly poetic language of her creator.”
—Nina Tassi, Editions Bibliotekos
My hurt is crystalline,
taking on never before seen patterns,
subtle in that way of things
that belong to the mist, like cotton
candy and the blue drool that follows, or the haze
of teeth whiteners and skin powders that leave a dusting
of synthetic snow across the dermis, newly fallen
shadows, so close to not being, spinning
alone in a vacuum.
Lunatic Speaks is a surreal journey through the fever dream of creativity, exploring what it means to grow up as a woman and poet sensitive to the point of being skinless, walking the line between inspiration and madness daily.
ON LUNATIC SPEAKS:
"An intelligence that practically makes the page vibrate; A love of words and a choreographer’s understanding of how they dance upon the page; An eye for the details of our common experience that leaves nothing unquestioned or unseen; And a sense of HUMOR! I know! So rare! And this isn’t light verse; there are no rhyming tricks, no stand-up shows. The laugh-out-loud moments in “Lunatic Speaks” NEVER make the poems feel slight- instead make them reach deeper."
—Hansel Castro, Manhattan Chronicles
"Her poems will by turns tug at your heart and make you laugh at loud. An engaging and nuanced little collection, Lunatic Speaks is magnetic and relatable, a great volume to tuck in your bag and read as the subway rattles past each station. The poems will absorb you and help speed you toward your destination."
—Lauren C. Navarro, Editions Bibliotekos
Selected Poems & Articles
Caroline's writing is a "brave and innovative poetic exploration of the grotesque yet mystical universe."