$16.95, 7 x 7", 56 pgs, perfect bound

ISBN: 978-1-888553-80-3

As of January, 2016, purchase for the trade will be

handled by SPD.


Scorpyn Odes explores the iconic history of the scorpion in literature and mythology, as animal and constellation, demon, poison and guardian. What may be learned from a species with a four-hundred-million year history? How might evolutionary intelligence be a lens through which to consider various cultural maladies? Verse odes are interspersed with prose departures, and muse upon the many literal and metaphorical connotations of leaving. What must we celebrate, and from what must we depart in order to reaffirm a more sustainable humanity? What is the human equivalent to molting? What happens when disintegration of landscape becomes internalized? What depths of loss do we traverse in a time when toxicity challenges our ability to see our surroundings? How to build a house of hope with the potency to counter symptomatic forgetfulness? This work explores the possibility of "departure" as locomotion or energy source, travel and incantatory momentum.

Scorpyn Odes:Laynie Browne's
Eco-poetics House of Hope

photo by Ryan Collerd

Laynie Browne is the author of eleven collections of poetry and two novels. Her work appears in the second edition of The Norton Anthology of Postmodern American Poetry. Her newest collection Lost Parkour Ps(alm)s was just published in France, in both French and English editions by Presses Universitaires de Rouen et Du Havre. Her honors include: a Pew Fellowship, a National Poetry Series selection, a Contemporary Poetry Series selection and the Gertrude Stein Award of Innovative Writing. She is co-editor of I’ll Drown My Book: Conceptual Writing by Women and teaches at University of Pennsylvania and Swarthmore College.


This work explores the natural and literary history

of the scorpion as a lens through which to consider

various cultural maladies. Odes are interpersed

with poems titled "Departure" which muse upon

current political ailments and the many meanings

of leaving (literal and metaphorical). This work also

explores the possibility of "departure" as

locomotion or energy source, time travel and

incantatory momentum.

Laynie Browne, is an Arts Fellow selected by the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage

Praise for Scorpyn Odes


As though looking over the poet’s shoulder as she writes, “I PROPHESIZE, I PROPHESIZE, I PROPHESIZE,” a bold current racing through the new Dark Age.  Laynie Browne’s Scorpyn Odes is a departure not only from her previous books, but a departure from the known book.  Having been a devout follower of her work for years, THESE are her poems I most want to chant aloud, “From I may not speak to the mountain, I may not look at the mountain, I may not remember the mountain.”  You thought you were aware of what poetry could mean to you, could do to you, then her poems did something new to you. -- CAConrad, author of ECODEVIANCE

"The mysterious power of the scorpion, both animal and constellation, informs the complex emotions of wrenchingly ongoing departure in this beautiful collection of odes to distance, absence, connection, and memory. The scorpion is the "miniature vessel of time" that both poisons and heals: the gorgeous poetry around it is the "house of hope/ constructed solely of words." In this world of departures, Browne allows us to "Say possibly nothing is forgotten." -- Marcella Durand

"Laynie Browne has a knack for moving between worlds to channel an orchestra of animal, vegetable, and mineral voices. Scorpyn Odes is gritty and sublime, a meditation on the affections and afflictions that make us human." ---Lisa Jarnot, poet and Robert Duncan biographer (The Ambassador from Venus)

excerpt from Scorpyn Odes, poems by Laynie Browne

Scorpyn Ode


I prayed the dictionary

I asked pardon of dream

I feared scorpions in their silence

And walked each morning

into the rising mountain

I vowed not to become

the nullifying silence

But to nullify the other

paralysis being born

To speak with the elevated

precision of silence

From the marrow of consciousness

The living aspect of which appears solid

but isn’t complete

until we have left

the word, the mountain

and the scorpionic premises




Readings & Events cont

April 17, 2015
University of Paris
Laynie Browne, a talk on The Poet’s Novel
Université de paris 8 Vincennes Saint Denis
2 rue de la liberté
Saint Denis
Métro Saint Denis Université

Friday, April 17, 2015
Double Change, Paris France
Laynie Browne & Lee Ann Brown
Fondation des Etats-Unis
15 Boulevard Jourdan
75014 Paris
Contact for both Paris events is Vincent Broqua

April 22, 2015
Xing the Line!
at The Apple Tree
45 Mount Pleasant, Clerenwell
Greater London WC1XOAE
a reading by Laynie Browne
London, England
Curator is Jeff Hilson at:

April 23, 2015, 6 PM
Laynie Browne & Jaya Savage
University of Cambridge, England
Trinity OCR, 6pm
Organized by grad student Kate Crowcroft

Scorpyn Odes by Laynie Browne

Press Release

Readings & Events

Feb 20, 2015, 8 pm
Small Animal Project
Laynie Browne, Julie Carr & Dan Bouchard
Outpost 186
186 1/2 Hampshire St
Cambridge MA
Curator: Jessica Bozek

Feb 21, 2015, 8pm
Publicly Complex at Ada Books
Laynei Browne, Julie Carr & Katherine Agard
717 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903
Curator: Kate Shapira

March 8, 2015, 7pm
Belladonna Collective
Laynie Browne, Kimberly Lyons and Patricia Spears Jones
McNally Jackson Bookstore
52 Prince Street, New York, NY 10012
Curator Marcela Durand

March 25-28, 2015
&Now Blast Radias:Writing & Other Arts
California Institute of the Arts
24700 McBean Parkway, Valencia, CA 91355
Panel “Pressing Tender Buttons”