Double Review: Shelby Eileen – poems i sleep next to & their body and their afterthought

In February, I reviewed Goddess of the Hunt by Shelby Eileen. I absolutely loved it, so when I heard she had a new poetry collection out, I really wanted to review that as well. In this post, I’m also reviewing Shelby’s recent poetry chapbook.

poems i sleep next to

I was sent an eARC of poems i sleep next to by the author. This has in no way impacted my opinion.

poems i sleep next to

Shelby’s poems really speak to me, and this collection was no different. The second poem already hit me so hard.

“I know that still


they try to tell me that to be soft

is to be weak

to be young, to be naïve

to be unready, to be dependent […]”

And that was just the start. There were so many poems that made me cry, but also made me feel better about myself.

I read this collection because I was feeling really anxious that day, and it eased my anxiety and was the best choice I made that day.

This collection was a little less personal for me, as it deals heavily an ended relationship and heartbreak, which I’ve never experienced. So where Goddess of the Hunt (review) was very personal to me and that’s a big reason for why I love it, I did connect with this a little less. But I did still absolutely love it.

their body and their afterthought

their body and their afterthought

One of the reasons why I love Shelby’s social media presence are her tweets about fatphobia and body image, which are so incredibly helpful for me. This poetry chapbook, their body and their afterthought, has a bunch of poems about body image, and they reflected exactly how I feel about my body, and were so so healing to read. There are valuable poems about mental health as well.

To me, Shelby’s poetry makes a connection between the recent trend of “self care poetry” and just plain beautiful writing, which I sometimes find lacking in other self care poetry. I read both of these collections in one night, and they made me feel so much better.

What poetry books would you recommend?


9 thoughts on “Double Review: Shelby Eileen – poems i sleep next to & their body and their afterthought

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  1. I’ve read Goddess of the Hunt and absolutely loved it as well. I hope I can connect with her writing again, though I kind of suspect there will be tears all around. I love your review, hopefully you can get more people to read Shelby’s poetry 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really want to read ‘their body and their afterthought’! I think that i’ll connect with that collection a lot. I don’t read a lot of poetry but early this year I read ‘She Must Be Mad’ by Charly Cox and really enjoyed it.

    Liked by 1 person

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