Home page   |   Guestbook   |   Contact

Embellishments is Virginia Chase Sutton's first book. Full of raw, powerful reflections from her life, Sutton tackles the demons of her childhood and their continuing presence in her adult life. Yet this finely written verse avoids the heaviness of "issue" writing --- the magically realized experiences in these pages offer us a story worth reading

"Embellishments" is available for purchase at the following retailers:





What others are saying:


Virginia Chase Sutton is, perhaps above all else, a poet of exquisite detail so that her precise and sometimes even obsessive attention to the seemingly mundane aspects of our objective reality come alive in her poems, and shimmer in the light of understanding. There is a sense too that these poems have come to us as if from a place very far away and full of mortal danger, as if the poet has rescued not only her own self from loss and despair, but language itself, so that the language throughout this highly accomplished first book is always fresh and vivid, the ordinary diction by which we curse and bless, love and hate on a daily basis, is resonant and restorative in its clarity and directness. This is not the poetry of victimhood, but rather, the clear and necessary poetry of witness. - Bruce Weigl


Virginia Chase Sutton's evocations of memory are built of language so lavish and energetically wrought that remembering itself comes to seem a kind of spell: a painful, erotic, dizzying fascination that holds this speaker in thrall. Embellishments is a fierce, memorable debut. - Mark Doty

This is a book that looks the reader in the eye with tenderness. Sutton travels the road of small joys, slurred desire, and canyons of loss with an expansive diction that ranges from the lush and magical to the vernacular of the everyday. There is an amazing lack of shelter in these poems, as Sutton bravely illuminates loss in full color. The reader basks in the radiance of waiting for creation while surrounded by so much beauty--until we are full, full of the world and ready for combustion. Above all, this is a book about breath--and the breath of the measure, of a speaker who breathes in a clarity of vision and breathes out mad color with a sharpshooter's accuarcy of language. Her poems will knock you alive. - Jan Beatty


Virginia Chase Sutton's poems are intimate, lush and full of that rarest of human attributes--empathy. Embellishments takes as its subject a family in flux and examines the mystery of how we learn to love, even when love is not evenly returned. This is a moving, honest, restless, book that shows us how to survive in a world simultaneously ravaged and beautiful. - Mark Wunderlich


Embellishments is not only a knockout collection of beautifully rendered lyric/narratives nearly overflowing with heartstopping, eye-grabbing imaginative detail, it's a moving diorama of a difficult and fascinating family story that runs the gauntlet of contemporary life. Sutton exults in the physical made manifest through a richly textured, sensuous language-- and her short sentences come at you like a sucker punch. - Roger Weingarten


Sutton Creates muscular, haunting poems out of the spell of words themselves. Though her poems are narrative in structure, they are lush, sensuous, and richly detailed. In many, the process of remembering becomes a kind of spell, driven by an intense lyricism that seduces the reader. - Alison Townsend (The Woman's Review of Books)