"These wonderful poems open a world of sensation and memory. But it is a world revealed by language, never just controlled. The voice that guides the action here is openhearted and open-minded—a lyric presence that never deserts the subject or the reader. Syntax, craft and cadence add to the gathering music from poem to poem with—to use a beautiful phrase from the book, 'each note tethering sound to meaning.'"—Eavan Boland
Haunting, alarming, transformative, and elusive, these poems bridge together the gaps between development stages: from girl, to woman, and then mother. With the complexities that intertwine them, can you be all three at once? Who shapes our identity, and who is in control here? How do we recognize, acknowledge, and honor the changing of who we are?
Little soul—kind, wandering—
body's host and guest,
look how you've lowered yourself,
moving in a world of ice,
washed of colour. My girl,
what compelled you once
is no more.
Originally from Kingston, Jamaica, Shara McCallum is the author of four previous books of poetry. Recognition for her poetry includes a Witter Bynner Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowship. Her poems and personal essays have been published in literary magazines, anthologies, and textbooks in the United States, United Kingdom, Caribbean, Latin America, and Israel and have been translated into Spanish, French, and Romanian. Since 2003, McCallum has been the Director of the Stadler Center for Poetry and a Professor of creative writing and literature at Bucknell University.