In lush and deeply intimate language, Jayme Ringleb’s debut collection So Tall It Ends in Heaven explores sexuality, estrangement, and the distances we travel for love. Following the end of a marriage, the book’s queer Southern speaker tries to restore a relationship with his father. His father lives across an ocean, but more keeps them apart than just that: the father rejected his son long ago after learning that his son is gay. The poems search for answers across the United States and Europe, in and out of historical imagination, as the speaker struggles to separate his understanding of devotion and belonging from the constant losses in his life. Drawing from—and subverting—the formal traditions of love poems, parables, and elegies, the collection claims a vital space for one's own solace. “Nobody will love you / like this poem does,” the speaker says; “Tell this poem / what you want. / Anything.”
In turns that are ruminative, funny, and tender, So Tall It Ends in Heaven questions what and whom one lets go of by coming out—can love, in all its complexities, ever be uncoupled from grief?
"A hard-won, triumphant debut."
—Carl Phillips, author of Then the War
“Brilliant. . .flawlessly renders both the
macro and the micro wonders of the universe.“
—Paige Lewis, author of Space Struck
“Tremendous. . . .bearing haunting revelations
and a beauty that cuts deep.”
—Natalie Shapero, author of Popular Longing
“It’s thrilling to discover a book
you know you’ll revisit for the rest of your life.“
—Kaveh Akbar, author of Pilgrim Bell