My Body the Guitar – Now Available Worldwide

Cover art by Gudni Hardarson

My Body the Guitar by Karla Linn Merrifield is a poetry book inspired by guitars, guitarists, and their music. It is slated for publication in December 2021 from Before Your Quiet Eyes Publications Holograph Series, a press in Rochester, NY, USA. It’s destined to be a fat book, one with three parts.

In “Part I, Mere Mortal,” we follow Karla’s learning curve in poems largely spoken to her guitar in a series of “Études.”

In “Part II, Local Heroes,” she honors the master guitarists in her inner circle: teachers, lovers, friends, online git pals, glancing encounters, her deceased brother.

In “Part III, “Great Gods,” readers encounter Karla’s idiosyncratic pantheon of immortals. including:

  • Jimi Hendrix
  • Eric Clapton
  • Tom Waits
  • Joni Mitchell
  • Stevie Ray Vaughn
  • Mark Knopfler
  • Warren Zevon
  • Eddie Van Halen
  • Jackson Browne
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Jerry Garcia
  • Jimmy Page  
  • Lindsay Buckingham
  • Bonnie Raitt
  • Duane Allman
  • George Harrison
  • Robert Johnson
  • Keith Richards – and more!

Signed copies are still available directly from me for $22 via PayPal or Zelle. Just email: to request your copy.

Or order from Amazon at:

Photo by Karla Linn Merrifield

Advance Praise for My Body the Guitar:

In this sublime collection, poet Karla Linn Merrifield rhapsodizes about her beloved guitars as if they were the embodiment of herself, which they are. Transitioning with equal parts insouciance and skill from the memorably indelicate (“slutty thug life”) to the divinely celestial (“archangel arisen on kite strings, sky-ripped”), she decants the breadth of human passion from her heart, from her soul, onto these pages.  ~Catherine Underhill Fitzpatrick, Author  

Sexy as hell. Absolutely fucking loved it. ~Julianne Ingles, Editor Guts Publishing.

A masterful blending of story and song, there’s a transcendent quality to My Body the Guitar that goes beyond the words on the page. It’s a musical journey in three parts: obsession and desire, nostalgia and longing, and reverence and prayer. Like a troubadour’s notebook of songs, this creates such depth and vision in this gorgeous and spellbinding book, and one can hear music weaving its way from cover to cover. An emotional and intimate book that will continue to reveal its secrets every time it is read. ~Jenni Brandon, composer of Sisters of the Covid Moon for soprano, bassoon, and piano, 2021

I was impressed by how much Karla knows about guitar masters and the guitars they love, including the intricate makings of an electric guitar itself. “Étude 5-10: Cocooned, Day 56” and “Étude 5-16: Makin’ Do” brought back those long days of the shutdown and not being able to play out in the world, but they also made me smile. I enjoyed revisiting the Met’s Play It Loud exhibit through Karla’s remembrance of its “wall-to-plexiglass-wall of guitar porn” (and I too loved seeing, among other “instrument[s] of devotion,” Clapton’s “Blackie,” from both sides). Karla describes how, on her own guitar, she “began groping for the C major/pentatonic scale from fret 5,” and “began grasping a new pattern/of being along the strings”: I remember that moment of revelation too, when I learned the pentatonic scale and suddenly realized I could play the blues—the basis of most rock and roll. And I can relate to Karla’s naming her Martin “Boner” because I got one myself every time I learned something new on the guitar (and my wife wants me to keep learning). Karla perfectly describes the joy of learning to play and, through it all, to keep on playing. ~George Ott, long-suffering, underappreciated Jersey Shore musician

Life is all about emotions, memories, and meaning. Karla brought and blended these ingredients together with music, guitars, friends, and, above all, a joyful life into an elegant poem shape. It is a privilege to read, at the same time, an intimate love letter and a tribute to all the vibe music brings. What a powerful, joyful, “musicful,” “guitarful” ride!!! We felt so proud and thrilled to read and feel that Karla wanted us all to be part of this… to be part of her life. ~Júlio Martins, Partner, luthier, AVA Guitars, (Portugal)

When reading Karla Linn Merrifield’s poems, I can hear her voice filled with nuances, cadences, and varied tempi. In other words: it is musical! How fitting that she wrote an entire collection of poems about her musical influences and her favorite instrument. Her language is thoughtfully crafted, witty, touching. Buy this book and make sure you go hear Karla read from it! ~Sylvie Beaudette, founder and former director of the Women in Music Festival, Eastman School of Music (Rochester, NY)

In a moment of uncommon lucidness, famed musician Carlos Santana had this to say about the guitar, “The guitar is shaped like a woman, with a neck you hold and a body you hug against yourself. You can touch your fingers up and down the strings, but you have to be delicate and know what you’re doing . . .” Poet Karla Linn Merrifield, exploits and explicates Santana’s erotic reflection in her stunning new collection, My Body the Guitar. Merrifield invites readers to join her on a musical and poetic journey hallmarked by Merrifield’s own unique poetic style. A veteran poet, her work showcases a variety of forms which are distinctive, humorous, transparent, and unapologetically erotic. A singular achievement of this collection is the way the poet streams her knowledge of the instrument’s history and its famous players into her work. ~Michael Escoubas, author of Images: A Collection of Ekphrastic Poetry

An incredible immersive work written from the inside out, learning to play guitar from scratch to dive deeper into poetic Nirvana.!!! A groundbreaking work written with the deepest love of the art. A virtuoso poet at the height of her powers. ~Paul Garthwaite, guitarist, composer, teacher (UK)

2 thoughts on “My Body the Guitar – Now Available Worldwide

  1. Can’t wait to read it.

    On Sun, Jan 23, 2022, 6:53 AM Karla Linn Merrifield wrote:

    > karlapoet posted: ” Cover art by Gudni Hardarson My Body the Guitar by > Karla Linn Merrifield is a poetry book inspired by guitars, guitarists, and > their music. It is slated for publication in December 2021 from Before Your > Quiet Eyes Publications Holograph Series, a pres” >


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: