Anchor & Plume Press (March 2016)

5.5x 8.5   36 pages    $10.00


named 2016 Book of the Year by Alabama State Poetry Society

"In the Middling Alabama" from this chapbook
(Lunch Ticket, Winter/Spring 2016 issue).

"First Love: Forte Til Finale"
(Speaking of Marvels)

"Oscar Dees, No Apologetics Please"
Nominated for 2017 Pushcart Prize

Review by Mindy Kronenberg  
(Mom Egg Review, March 2017)

Cover art and design for Objects in Vases was created by Christina Collins, an artist, editor, and writer currently living in Minneapolis. You can find her online at yourfriendchristina.com.


"Objects in Vases reminds us how startling realizations can be summoned from our observed and disseminated domestic lives, narratives of both the trapped and treasured truths of ourselves. These revelations of family, romance, and selfhood come together to create a hard-won and preserved identity."

Review by Mindy Kronenberg for Mom Egg Review, March 2017.



In this little book we encounter a girl unfolding into a woman (which is not, contrary to popular belief, all blossoming)—sometimes angry, sometimes awkward, sometimes amazed, contrite, vengeful, stymied and humble, but always on the lookout for what will become a solitary being standing of her own free will.

—Mary Ruefle, author of Trances of the Blast and Madness, Rack, and Honey

For me, reading Alina Stefanescu’s poems feels like having front-row seats for the tightrope act. Eyes fix on every careful, precise step, taking in the elegant dance. Meanwhile, inside, the heart beats wildly, sensing danger, and it’s only after the walk ends when I realize that I forgot to breathe. What makes her poems so compelling is that same mix of passion and control, surface subtlety with tension underneath. Whether describing flowers, relationships, or the meaning of her own name, she moves with that same caution, hinting at peril, weaving and dodging, leaving the reader unable to look away.

—Ace Boggess, author of The Prisoners

"How / I find my nude protecting his." Alina Stefanescu's Objects in Vases is the calmest debut collection I've read in over a decade, an expert challenge to the false claims of grief. A girl, skateboard under her feet, knows that her "hunger for pure blue sky" is accuate. In Stefanescu's world, pain and loss, much as they wish to be lead walls, instead become entrances into the Presence behind the veil, where the reader finds not conclusion, but journey. Objects in Vases artlessly (and helpfully!) "uncloisters the divine" so that it can share its best secret, at once pure and erotic: we are safest when we are naked.

—Nathan Parker, author of Locust Diagrams

Just as, in her title poem, in order "to describe the lilacs" Alina Stefanescu "begin[s] with the vase,” these poems examine the vessels—historical, linguistic, relational, geographical, and political—that contain and shape us. Impressive for their expressive and tonal range, Stefanescu's poems are fresh and insightful, often unpredictable in a delightful way.

—Luke Hankins, author of Weak Devotions and The Work of Creation

It is unusual to find inventive, playful word choice and an ear for language combined with such intensely personal, openly confessional poetry. These poems explore the common experience of life and love while remembering to be fresh and inventive. The result is beauty in all its joy and mystery, wonder and fearful power. A very enjoyable journey with an emerging voice.

—Barry Marks, author of Sounding and Dividing by Zero

For copies, please contact Alina.