The Mayapple Forest
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About the Author
Kim Ports Parsons' stunning debut collection, The Mayapple Forest, bursts forth with such lush language and captivating images that I read it twice the first night I received it. Parsons captures a reader's experience in her poem Ella: Two Ways, which might also serve as an ars poetica. She writes: "When Ella sings, she spreads her song like a quilt of velvet chords / wrapped around lonely, a dreamwork of sighs, / a belly full of ache, an earthquake in the heart." Parsons opens her whole self to the world around her and within her to pray, so her choice of epigraph from Joy Harjo's "Eagle Poem" is perfect. Brava!
-Malaika King Albrecht
From the very beginning of The Mayapple Forest Kim Ports Parsons awakens a reader's hope despite undeniable cause for despair, "The gifts of these months of plague and separation / are silence and space and time . . ./to be alive, to breathe, to wake, to hear the owl's call." Poems of loss-the absence of her mother-precede poems of thrill and excitement for being with her lover, "I want to ride through this life like a child standing on the hump of an old sedan." Parsons writes with tenderness, resilience, fortitude, and a trust reminiscent of Jack Gilbert's.