What I Should Have Said: A Poetry Memoir About Losing A Child to Addiction

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Product Details
Finishing Line Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.0 X 0.31 inches | 0.44 pounds
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About the Author
Lanette Sweeney's fiction, essays and poetry have appeared in Rattle, Foliate Oak Review, Blue Collar Review, Please See Me, several editions of the popular women's studies anthology Women: Images and Reality, and in many other publications. She taught writing and Women's Studies at SUNY New Paltz, where she earned her degrees, a BA in Women's Studies and an MA in English Literature in her 30s. Sweeney also worked as a college fund-raiser, non-profit executive, cocktail waitress, and real-estate agent. She is now a full-time writer thanks to her wife's support.

"Starting with the first line of the first poem, 'The night that bled into the morning my son died, ' I read this collection straight through with my heart in my throat. Reader, prepare yourself: once you start reading What I Should Have Said, you won't be able to stop. After reading these poignant poems, which are full of joy as well as sorrow, I feel that I, too, knew Kyle, and I miss him very much."

-Lesléa Newman, author of I Carry My Mother and I Wish My Father

"What I Should Have Said is a raw and painful chronicle of a bereaved mother's journey through losing her child to the disease of addiction. I've been struggling with the death of our second son, Christopher, and Lanette's words really helped me move forward in my grief. Her brutal honesty allowed me to process Christopher's death from alcohol addiction. I'm encouraged by her "List of Hopes" at the end of the book and have begun writing my own list. I thank the author for shedding light on the darkness and stigma attached to the disease of addiction and for reminding us that our children were and are so much more than their addictions."

-Kathy Corrigan, Board President, Bereaved Parents of the USA

"If it were fiction, if it did not lacerate the heart to know the truth behind it, Lanette Sweeney's poetry memoir about losing a child to drugs would only be tragically beautiful. As it is, it is devastating, featuring poetry by her lost son Kyle [Fisher-Hertz] along with her own. Speaking the unspeakable for her own peace, and for the understanding of the rest of us, is Sweeney's mission. The only thing better than reading these tender, elegiac, broken words would be for her to never have needed to write them."

-Jacquelyn Mitchard, author, The Deep End of the Ocean and 18 other novels