The Fire’s Edge
The 1972 Kent State shootings, the pinned specimen bodies of butterflies, a dying mother-Nancy Richardson’s poems bring grace and a beautiful poignancy to these and other matters. Absolutely lovely!
- Nance Van Winckel
These terse, understated poems pack a great emotional punch. Unerringly, Nancy Richardson hits the mortal vulnerabilities and the socio-political ones. This book is a history of the grievous wastefulness of a post-WWII United States that in many ways has gone to hell: yet there is no accusation here. Rather, there is poetry of what has been shattered.
- Baron Wormser
An Everyday Thing
“Without poetry there would be no history,” wrote Paz, and Nancy Richardson’s superb book is proof enough. Anchored in the tragic events of Kent State, but radiating out to examine other forms of violence and relationships, Nancy Richardson’s poems speak eloquently and superbly to our own times. To do this she counterpoints the “everyday” whether that be an apt observation or a family event and its unique quality. So for instance, in “Queen Anne’s Lace,” set suddenly in the midst all this, she understands its “Delicacy / in the midst of loss,” but does not stop there, rather moves on to what good poetry should do—heal—as she ends it by noting “these petals of silk, this snowflake of stars,” an image that lets us transcend but not avoid the real world she describes. This is an important book, deftly written, a must read.
- Richard Jackson, UTNAA Distinguished Professor of English, and Professor, Vermont College.
Cover art by John Anderson