In July 2013, Silver Birch Press released Ransack and Dance, a collection of poems by Chris Forhan — one of our favorite all-time poets. We are pleased to nominate Chris Forhan for a 2013 Pushcart Prize.


by Chris Forhan

It seized me—never mind the circumstance: sudden
scent in the breeze like cinnamon, sun silvering
a roof as the unicycle parade began—it seized me
as sickness does, wholly, with no mercy,
all of my body obeisant to its law as though none of it
were mine, finally: not the joy or the body.

“RANSACK AND DANCE is a book by a poet reaching the heights of his art. Every word is where it is for a reason, and every sound is where it is for a reason. And those reasons add up to surprise and delight. This is the rarest thing for a collection of poems: there is not a line of prose in it!”


Chris Forhan‘s images and insights . . . seem . . . to spring from the poet’s subconscious to the reader’s, with the vessel of the poem their only necessary medium. I can think of no better reading experience or more that could be asked of the best poetry.” LAURA KASISCHKE, West Branch Wired

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Chris Forhan, born and raised in Seattle, Washington, is the author of three books of poetry: Black Leapt In, winner of the Barrow Street Press Poetry Prize; The Actual MoonThe Actual Stars, winner of the Morse Poetry Prize and a Washington State Book Award; and Forgive Us Our Happiness, winner of the Bakeless Prize. He is also the author of two chapbooks, x and Crumbs of Bread, and his poems have appeared in Poetry, Paris Review, Ploughshares, New England Review, Parnassus, and other magazines, as well as in The Best American Poetry. He has won a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and two Pushcart Prizes and has been a resident at Yaddo and a fellow at Bread Loaf. He lives with his wife, the poet Alessandra Lynch, and their two sons, Milo and Oliver, in Indianapolis, where he teaches at Butler University.

Find Ransack and Dance, poems by Chris Forhan at