Nikki Wallschlaeger


Notable Poetry Book of 2017 in the Chicago Tribune

Poetry Book Club Selection by the Rumpus

“Poet Nikki Wallschlaeger is keen on the complex relationship between debt and domestic life. Her new book Crawlspace (Bloof Books, 2017), a series of sonnets that consciously disrupt their own formal limits, discovers the violence embedded in our most familiar structures: mortgages, meals, rooms, houses, family relationships, and language itself. Wallschlaeger’s poems feel timely, as the links between property ownership, alienated labor, and the history of black slavery in the United States (‘Greasy gangrene hamburger wrapper of a country,’ in her words) become clearer by the day. She deploys a new vocabulary for talking about the legacies of slavery and white supremacy as they manifest in daily life — a vocabulary that is as damning as it is lush, as rich with sound as it is bright with image.” —Iris Cushing, HYPERALLERGIC

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May 2017
CRAWLSPACE by Nikki Wallschlaeger
6 x 9 / 80 pages
Trade paper original
ISBN: 978-0-9965868-5-6

Bloof is thrilled to announce the first book in our 2017 lineup: CRAWLSPACE by Nikki Wallschlaeger. We have already had the pleasure of working with Nikki on her graphic chapbook, I Hate Telling You How I Really Feel, and we can’t wait to bring this new book.

The second book by the author of Houses, CRAWLSPACE collects thirty-six pieces built on the foundation of the sonnet, ranging in length from fourteen lines to longer works stacking multiple sonnets into linked sequences. CRAWLSPACE deepens and extends the house metaphor from Wallschlaeger’s first book, while opening up more initmate and sometimes darker intellectual territory. Where Houses explored the mental/emotional/physical sheltered spaces in which we live out and construct our lives, Crawlspace explores the the more constricted spaces, the tighter concealed passages running above and below. These sonnets aim to be “very very fraught with you.”

From the Author:

“Form is everywhere & it’s useless to deny it, so I like to play with the illusion of having control. This is from a series of sonnets that I’ve placed into small buildings, but since the bank owns the buildings that I move in, I am only paying mortgage. We have an understanding. The sonnet has agreed to the task of my subversions, that the security guard is on a permanent lunch break so we can get inside. A window that is open on the top floor? A claw in the painting? These are my micro-victories against hegemony.”

Additional information


Wallschlaeger, Nikki