Grace Cavalieri’s November 2018 Exemplars of Poetry
Every month for the Washington Independent Review of Books, the amazing Maryland Poet, Grace Cavalieri, author of Other Voices, Other Lives, does a round-up style review of the best recently released independent books of poetry and books about poetry.
And don’t forget to support your indies!
Here is an excerpt, a review of The Book of Sharks by Rob Carney from Black Lawrence Press (What an awesome job they did with the cover art on this one. Wow!)
I can’t think of another writer who honors the shark as the driving dream of a poet’s consciousness. This is the way Carney explains the world — philosophically, environmentally, and emotionally. We learn about the shark in its actuality and we learn about the creature as a life energy — scientific and poetic, accurate and dreamlike. Carney has found a form and context for his own journey. Uniformly stunning couplets unfold an impeccable story. And at the heart, the storyteller is an American boy telling a tale of great range and true hearted poems in tasteful commentary.
The cousin of a shark is a manta ray;
and the cousin of a manta ray, a hawk;
and the cousin of a hawk is lightning, the ocean reborn,
returned skyward and alive with storm;
and the cousin of storms is a waterfall;
and the cousin of falling is the wind;
and the cousin of wind is erosion
leaving rock, the bones of the mountains, scattered;
and the cousin of the mountains is a row of teeth,
and another, and another behind;
and those teeth are the cousin of the manta ray,
lightning, the wind…