What to Tip the Boatman?
There are those rare human beings among us who themselves embody so much myth, history, and poetry that what they do includes a depth of profane and sacred meaning, of before and after, whatever the present event. Cleopatra Mathis is such a poet and hero in a non-heroic age, a poet who comes back from hell, from where all heroes must go and return, offering us her poetry, a gift of new life, beauty, and understanding.
Much of this remarkable book of poems is about mothering—the poet as mother of a troubled and gifted daughter. These are “household poems” in the sense that the Iliad is about the household of Priam. The modern Greeks sometime say that a person is “put twice in the fire,” as iron is put twice in the fire to strengthen it. Cleopatra Mathis is such a person and such a poet. Her life is a flame and so is the poetry. The reader has reason to be grateful to her for this lyrical iron.
2 pages matching birch in this book
Results 1-2 of 2
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
baby birch body breath bus stop caught child circling Cleopatra Mathis clock cold color cradle dark Dartmouth College daughter dead DEMETER THE PILGRIM door Elvis everything face FALL AT WELLFLEET fear FIGURE OF FORMAL fist flesh FORMAL LOSS girl goddess gold gray green grief ground Hades hair hands head hear heart heartbeat hell hold horse inside knew knife layers leaves let her climb light live lock Louisiana MOOSE MOUNTAIN mother mouth move night nothingness OCULAR OCCLUSION past pastel PERSEPHONE pulled river road sand scream Sheep Meadow Press silence spin sleep sleet slice smell snow SOLSTICE story swallowed terror thing thud TIP THE BOATMAN took trees tunneled turned voice waiting wakes walk walls watching weather WELLFLEET BEACH WHITE PRIMER winter woman woods