By Elizabeth Treadwell


O Books
Original Language(s)
Additional Credits
Cover art by Paul Jackson &
Leslie Scalapino
Design by Guy Bennett
Drama, Poetry
Edition, Year
First Edition, 2004
In Print

Lilyfoil is a biography. Set off by contrast, Lilyfoil is impossible to pinpoint. She is the thing when not compared to something is as temporary as a monofilm candy wrapper… We must recognize the seduction of sentiment and the way that definition will suffocate. It is a tenuous line that Elizabeth Treadwell walks, seducing with memory but not letting the fog clear. — Sarah Anne Cox

Elizabeth Treadwell
Born in Oakland, California, in 1967, Elizabeth Treadwell's collections of poetry include Birds & Fancies (2007) and Posy: a charm almanack & atlas (2015). Her most recent, Penny ... Read More

Though the subtitle to the first poem, ‘Lilyfoil (or Boy & Girl Tramps of America)’ makes a nod to the non-distaff side, the feminine “America” is the crypto-heroine of the piece. While the goodtime girl Lilyfoil draws a lot of attention to herself — ‘swinging singing/jacques lacan let me rock ya let me rock ya jacques/lacan,’ ‘sallying’ around, and ‘making out with blanks. the princess/spontaneity. crumpled hula hoop’ — it is space itself which is the ground and field for all this physical and verbal action, and this space, with few exceptions, feels American

— Joyelle McSweeney, Galatea Resurrects


Treadwell glimpsing the lily through the foil of what? Theory? Architecture? The shroud of romanticism? What? (I’m skimming the questions off the top here…there are whole structures under these lines if you care to take a flash light in hand.)

— Sina Queryas, Lemonhound


Praise for LILYFOIL + 3

I imagine this “Lilyfoil” as a modern heroine, a no-nonsense young woman in the extensive nonsense of “scenarioville.” She cuts through the “postnatural pap” and keeps coming; sallies into the “sullied grainhouse” as necessary. Elizabeth Treadwell wades into the “pioneer rubbish” of “Rumsfeldhouse” and the tabloid rubbish of the reign of QE2, setting off linguistic fireworks until we become new Elizabethans.

— Rae Armantrout

In her recent books, Elizabeth Treadwell has been pushing hard against language to get to a deeper and often overlooked musicality in our world. In Lilyfoil + 3 she arrives at a musicality that is feminist and angular; that is Gertrude Stein and Mina Loy; that is pointed and luminous; that is, in short, Lilyfoil, not lily flower.

— Juliana Spahr

Elizabeth Treadwell’s art offers irresistible engagement with the intersections of poetry and fiction, culture and intimacy, revolution and description.

— Carol Mirakove

T’s imploded psychological narratives sally through various planes of reference and anti-reference… prettiness has been partly hijacked, so that it must accommodate vultures, tear gas, and oceans full of shit as well as tea-parties, flowers, and doll bouquets. This is a music gone awry from itself, but it has a beat and you can dance to it, reworking Chaka Khan lyrics as needed for psychoanalytic ambidexterity. So like she says, climb out of your shape and wreck it.

— K. Silem Mohammad

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Translated by Nathanaël

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