Abruptio

Melissa Fournier (Author) Robert R. Sanders (Cover Design by)
& 1 more
Available

Description

Abruptio--A mother's worst fear is realized at 23 weeks into the pregnancy, and a baby girl is born at the edge of viability. Melissa Fournier shares her profound grief for her daughter's brief life in these intimate poems that reflect the power of grace to transform sorrow into resilience and hope.

EARLY PRAISE:

"Fournier knits fragments together into the baby's shroud to show us, the readers, the empty home, the mother's weeping breasts, this child Camille Grace, this family, this world, its grief."

--Dr. Rita Charon, Columbia University Narrative Medicine

"Melissa Fournier's poems mirror the presence of her lost child: small, exquisite, unknown. I'm reminded that trustworthy voices are those who do not turn away from pain or love. Fournier is one of those voices."

--Teresa Scollon, poet author, To Embroider the Ground with Prayer

"This poet has an astonishing ability to elicit the ache of grief, her skill with metaphor leading us to understand what is inherently incomprehensible."

--Joanna White, poet and music professor, Drumskin and Bones

Product Details

Price
$12.00
Publisher
Poetry Box
Publish Date
July 15, 2019
Pages
40
Dimensions
5.5 X 0.08 X 8.5 inches | 0.13 pounds
Language
English
Type
Paperback
EAN/UPC
9781948461306

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About the Author

Melissa Fournier is a wife, mother, and social worker living in Traverse City, Michigan. Her poetry has appeared in Dunes Review, The Sow's Ear Poetry Review, Pulse: Voices from the Heart of Medicine, and Medical Literary Messenger. She is co-editor of AFTER, Stories about Loss and What Comes Next (Barnwood Books, 2019). She has a background in mental health, adult, pediatric and perinatal hospice, is a student of Narrative Medicine, and works as the program director for a non-profit bereavement center, where she continuously dares to choose a life of joy and awe.
Shawn Aveningo Sanders grew up in St Louis, Missouri and after a bit of globetrotting finally landed in Portland, Oregon, where she miraculously overcame her lifelong fear of birds upon meeting two baby juncos in her backyard. She believes poetry is the perfect literary art form for today's fast-paced world, due to its power to stir emotion in less than two minutes. Since 2008, Shawn's work has appeared globally in over 150 literary journals and anthologies. She's a Pushcart nominee, Best of the Net nominee, and managing editor for The Poeming Pigeon. She was named Best Female Poet-Performer in the Sacramento News & Review Reader Poll (2009) and was winner of the first poetry slam in Placerville, California (2012). Shawn is a proud mother of three amazing adults, and she shares the creative life with her husband, Robert. You can learn more about her at RedShoePoet.com.

Reviews

In this collection, Melissa Fournier's poems mirror the presence of her lost child: small, exquisite, unknown. Speaking quietly and directly, Fournier evokes what will remain forever unsaid--grief which cannot be completely limned, the potential life which will not be realized, the mysteries of faith and dreams.

Like the goldfinch in the eponymous poem, all of these poems are spare and unsparing; light enough to hold easily in the palm of the hand but carrying tremendous emotional heft. I'm reminded that trustworthy voices are those who do not turn away from pain or love. Fournier is one of those voices.

--Teresa Scollon, poet and author, To Embroider the Ground with Prayer

This extraordinary collection of images, as spare as Japanese paintings, gives the reader a sensation of being in the poems and artfully conveys, not only what is in a scene but what is tragically absent; we fully realize what is kept and what has been taken away. With her sensual language, this poet has an astonishing ability to elicit the ache of grief, her skill with metaphor leading us to understand what is inherently incomprehensible. Beginning with the Kandinsky circles, which announce the rich hue of blood and the gong of the singing bowls, we are alerted to the start of a pivotal event so sad and so requiring of reflection, that we cannot turn away. Images heighten our senses, from the sky-fallen goldfinch to the fused eyelids to the hungry fox to the desperation of Jochebed. We blur into the backwards-counting haze of anesthesia, swallow at the leaf taped to the patient's door, look up at the transformation of cherry blossom branches into mother's lace-covered sleeves, and clench at the hurl of the pear. You cannot open this book without entering this world of impossible decisions and unimaginable outcomes, and I doubt you can read it without tears. But read it...because then you will know you are not alone.

--Joanna White, poet and music professor, Drumskin and Bones

The nurse tapes a sign on her hospital room door to warn the other staff that this mother's baby has died. Untethered, these poems of grief and rage capture, somehow, the delicacy of the dead child's eyes, the surreal vision of the ravenous fox in the henhouse, and the simple fact of blossoms blooming at the burial. Blood takes turns with the bloodless. The mother of Moses hides her blessed infant in the reeds while Thomas doubts his Christ is ever coming back. In a poetic voice of unwanted authority and fearless sight, Fournier knits fragments together into the baby's shroud to show us, the readers, the empty home, the mother's weeping breasts, this child Camille Grace, this family, this world, its grief.

--Dr. Rita Charon, Columbia University Narrative Medicine