Love and Dread, a contemplative and joyous collection around a late second marriage, might be the opposite of The Inferno — Hadas has found herself not in a dark wood, but in a sun-blessed clearing where the only shadows arise from understanding she is past mid-life, even if the world feels new at present. More than any other poet I know, Rachel Hadas has set up shop at the borders of inside and out, past and future, life and death, the conscious and the subconscious, and her wares from these liminal thresholds are those rarest of treasured souvenirs that absolutely cannot be found anywhere else. 

— Jessica Greenbaum

Hadas’ Love and Dread reaches out with a smooth claw into a storm — climate change, a devastated America, personal loss — to find the quiet truths that exist in the everyday ceremony of love. Birth and death move simultaneously, glance at one another in the long hall of the book, as their coupling is made manifest through form, through sound and repetition. Love and Dread is a poised and ecstatic book which watches the threshold in both directions.

— Andrés  Cerpa

 In so many of these poems — striking, raw, and tender — Hadas is waking up. Into anxiety, love, the surprise of a second chance. Is it deserved? Will it melt away if she hasn’t earned it? Love and Dread suggests that things don’t operate on that metric. But you may get your share of pain, glory, and — if you’re lucky — the love that can happen if you open the right door with an open heart. This collection describes life that endures with tragedies and miracles. I loved it. 

—Sherry Turkle


Author of many books of poetry, essays, and translation, Rachel Hadas is Board of Governors Professor of English at Rutgers-Newark. Poems For Camilla was published by Measure Press in 2018; Piece By Piece, selected prose, will be published by Paul Dry Books later this year.