Brooklyn Copeland’s verse has been compared to that of William Carlos Williams and H.D. — the imagist poet Hilda Doolittle who was analyzed by Freud, befriended by Marianne Moore and Pound, and posthumously lionized by gay rights activists for the style and candor with which she expressed her bisexuality. Copeland’s poetry does carry lingual echoes of these legends, particularly in its articulated rhythms and descriptive percussion–sonic hammers that help construct the environments of her poems as much as the words do.
Awarded a Ruth Lilly Fellowship, Copeland’s first full-length book, Siphon, Harbor was published in 2012. It followed numerous chapbooks, including Laked, Fielded, Blanked (2010), which so affected some admirers that attempts to describe its power yield only obtuse–though charmingly incantatory–results. Copeland is young, lives in Indianapolis and honors her gift with hard work. She too may one day, like Doolittle, become a hero. It could even be today for anyone who knows the experience she describes here: