Hey Folly by Mary Margaret Alvarado


“Hey Folly brims with life and afterlife, a contemporary catalog of true human and inhuman plights and delights.” —Katie Ford


  • Kind: Perfectbound
  • Pages: 104
  • Language: English
  • Published: Februarym 2013
  • ISBN:  978-1-933675-84-8


“Everything [is] birthing its vanishing point” in the world of these remarkable poems—where “each fruit fills itself, and falls,” and “the metastasized colors…peal into everything.” The world of beauty is a world of unspeakable pain, and here—“Inside the inside / of a being going”—is the sense of a mind never not reeling with the effort to inhabit this paradox. Wonder, awe and exuberance contend with a crushing awareness of injustice and the suffering of others. These poems navigate the broken world with an attention so benevolent and complete that even their sorrow is full of praise. Reading them, I am reminded that “gratitude” shares a root with “grace.” —Ashley Capps

Hey Folly brims with life and afterlife, a contemporary catalog of true human and inhuman plights and delights. Just when you think the astounding creativity is almost too delightful and buoyant to bear, Alvarado shoots at the heart of the reader who, once again, must not forget the violence and pain of our time. —Katie Ford

Mary Margaret Alvarado is a magical poet, a necessary poet.  Hey Folly sings in ways we haven’t heard before.  (“I am not even talking / about the harlequin mantis shrimp / or a snowcube caked in pitch. This / has nothing to do with the ruby stalks / we left behind, or the hue of a voice / that was lost.”)  These poems tell new stories in new ways.  These poems change us, and we need to be changed (“Everyone is forgiven and their faces are blown off”).  If you’re worried about the future of poetry, stop. —Joseph Lease



I am going
by the ship ladder:
I will assemble
a bowl
of pears.
From a standing
dead forest.
From pecan
shells. Small views
of what’s doing
in snow.
The planks
are milled. And me.
Hey season’s folly.
Hey folly. Hey.


Mary Margaret Alvarado was born in Texas and raised in Colorado, where she lives now. She was a Cronin Award winner at Notre Dame, an editorial assistant at Harper’s Magazine, a Provost’s Post-Graduate Writing Fellow at the University of Iowa, and a writer-in-residence at Cincinnati’s Seven Hills School. Her poetry and essays have been published in the Beloit Poetry Journal, the Iowa Review, the New Orleans Review, and elsewhere. She goes by Mia.

Additional information

Weight 9 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × .25 in