Red Hen Press, Apr 2020
Poetry, Grief, Love
Triggers: Death, Grief, Betrayal
The cover is austere and abstract. This is totally appropriate to this book of poetry about lost love and grief, death. This is definitely a cover that will catch the eye of the reader. It certainly caught my eye and was the first reason I requested to read the book.
Ms. Jackson crafts poems with an elegance of vocabulary and creates such richness of descriptions that you feel you are moving through a viscous fluid of emotion. You feel you are grieving right there with the widow. You feel you are the one cheated on. You feel you are the one who has had to go on, alone, with your son, however you must go on.
This passage struck me as the total story for a widow:
On the sixth day after his death
She enters the home that used to be theirs
And lies on a bed that today was made
For her, by her.
It is the summer she prayed for more color.
On the third day she looks at her hips,
Her breasts: two empty vows.
She wakes only with herself.
It is the summer of space and line.
The wind wants too much.
A voice in the language of chimes forbids her to eat,
To hate yellow, to tug fists-full of her hair.
Her legs pause when cleaning the dead hydrangea
Of funeral bouquets from the floor, dried blue
Bullets. Branches will grow from her eyes, leaves on
Her fingertips, and bark will wrap her torso like a
There is love and grief in this poetry. There is anger and betrayal here as well. There is loss. There is much to be felt in these beautifully crafted lines woven into poems by Ms. Jackson. I highly recommend these richly crafted pages for anyone who enjoys poetry.