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“These surreal pieces are quietly intense and fervently alive. They offer visions both meditative and alarming. Animated by hyperacuity of consciousness, Cure All balances on that fulcrum between smoldering control and pregnant invention, scientific observation and an exacting madness. The literal and the figurative, fact and fancy, degeneration and rebirth all chase each other, mate and merge. The mind, the body and the seething natural world engulf one another. Cyril Connolly wrote, ‘Imagination...is the liquid solution in which art develops the snapshots of reality.’ That elixir is the rich, rushing lifeblood of this collection.”

Amy Gerstler, author of Ghost Girl


“Uncanny and perverse, the poetic fictions of Kim Parko’s Cure All act as electrodes to stimulate unsuspected and possibly long-unused yet sublimely meaningful circuitry in the brain.”

Daniel Grandbois, author of Unlucky Lucky Days


“Parko’s Cure All is a wonderful combination of striking images, clever word play, and personal heartbreak—all simmering together and shining in a book that is sure to make many ‘best-of-the-year’ lists.”

Shane Jones, author of Light Boxes


“To call these pieces unique isn’t enough. With her fractured shards of advice, sweet little nightmares, tunneled eyes and sprouted scales, Kim Parko presents a twisting puzzle of fire blights and lonely spines. This book will crawl into your house.”

Amelia Gray, author of AM/PM


Acknowledgments

Cover photograph © 2007 Elene Usdin. Used by permission. Grateful acknowledgment is made to the editors of the publications in which these pieces first appeared, some in different form and under different titles: 3rd Bed: “Explain,” “1.5”; 5AM: “Learn”; Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet: “Schoolgirl”; Frigg: “Sunday Best,” “The Curtain,” “The Conversationalists,” “Lucy,” “Calm Eye,” “The Spinning Woman,” “Gash,” “Matinee,” “Hibernation”; Keyhole: “Root Mouth”; Jubilat: “Murderess,” “Hold,” “Commerce”; Ocho: “The Bomb,” “Stork,” “Phases of the Moon”; The Bitter Oleander: “After the Flood.” Text © 2009 Kim Parko.