W I N G S P A N
Kai's wings are wide open and soaring in her second poetry collection, WINGSPAN. A catalog of fight and flight through life, Kai invites her readers into the innermost parts, where wing tuft meets flesh, where flesh meets bone. WINGSPAN is a book of spirit, movement, mirrors, activism, love, and the fluttering song of a woman who is coming into her own beauty and beingness. Coggin's poetic measurement in words, WINGSPAN holds earth and infinity between its feather tips.
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Wingspan is broad enough, compassionate enough, to summon and shelter readers who are often left outside the margins of the literary realm. In poems which challenge us to live with greater openness and courage, Coggin addresses the natural world, the spirit, and women’s embodiment. She offers several lush poems addressed to a lover and, in part, to the reader as well: “I have spent decadent lifetimes waiting to be yours, /waiting to be in line to the throne of your mouth.” This is a book built for usefulness and delight.
- Diane Seuss, Author of Four-Legged Girl
Kai’s voice transcends earth and travels into the universe while pulling readers inward, toward their inner selves. Her words are bright, warm, and sensual. Her poems are invitations to seek your best self from within—not necessarily an easy stroll, but a journey all the same.
- Trish Hopkinson, Author of Pieced into Treetops http://trishhopkinson.com/
Kai Coggin has opened her wings wide with Wingspan. Join Coggin on this journey of poetry that has her not only opening her wings and inviting the world in, but also peeling away every layer she’s accumulated down to the marrow. Her second full-length collection of poetry fights and flies with light and language that is needed to face the harshness of life. It is a catalogue of love, pain, activism, spirit, desire, beauty, evolution, and with pieces like Presidential Tears, Black Boy Down and Changing My Own Name, it is unabashed truth - the type of brutal truth that the world requires to move forward. This book seals her place as one of the most important QPOC voices in poetry today. With Wingspan, Kai has grown and morphed into a poetry powerhouse.
- Sarah Frances Moran, Founder & Editor of Yellow Chair Review
American author Kurt Vonnegut wrote, "The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.” Kai has done just that. We put ourselves out there, we risk ourselves with our art, and we in turn seek out the artists who do so. As Kai writes, “This is how we recognise each other, when we are looking with the eyes of our Souls.”
- Braja Sorensen, Author of Yoga in the Gita | Lost & Found in India
Kai Coggin has written an amazing collection of poetry that encompasses themes of empowerment, social justice, feminism and self-acceptance. Reminiscent of the revolutionary era of the 60s and 70s, Kai perfectly blends melodic imagery and a strong female voice in her words. Wingspan is a treasure.
- Dana Gornall, Co-Founder of The Tattooed Buddha
Wingspan is a book about becoming, transforming, and unfurling into the fullness of selfhood in all its disparate parts. “Hug yourself,” the poet invites us, to “pull in all the skin and flesh/ so that a mountain forms/ across your chest/ from which a sun can rise,” in celebration of a totality that is hard-earned and triumphant. In her sensual, full-hearted lyrical verse, Kai Coggin takes us on a journey of self-creation, self-acceptance, and self-actualization in an exploration of her multiple identities: daughter, woman, woman of color, woman of mixed race, woman who loves women, and woman of words. In the erotic feminist tradition of Sharon Olds and Adrienne Rich, Coggin locates these acts of naming and creation within the female body in a collection that swoops, soars, and delves deeply into the complexities of race, gender, sexuality, nationality, and family.
- Wendy Chin-Tanner, Author of Turn