The Holding Hours
Gazing through the lens of other lives challenged by disability and illness, including those of John Muir and the 16th-century Saint Germaine Cousin, these poems place personal experience in the context of pastoral poetic traditions, disability studies, and the history of political disruption.
Balk anchors these meditations within the landscape of the Pacific Northwest. She examines her (and our) relationship with nature—the moon snail, the azalea, snow geese, the dog rose—sing the precise and unsentimental language of a trained naturalist. The sounds and images evoked reveal a stunning artistry—a mediation between self and the world and a celebration of the beauty and fragility of life and the anticipation of rebirth.
About the Author
"Grief and beauty. Page by page, we're pulled into ecosystems of the heart more deeply than the clear surface of these poems leads us to expect. And that's the triumph of this book, for me: how clarity and restraint and the poet/biologist's precise vision can hold so much."—Linda Bierds, series editor
"Caught between the naturalist's way of knowing the names of things and the poet's way of loving their nameless essences, Balk writes with precision and care about the hunger for the sacred that lies in all things. Hawkweed, Husqvarna, a disabled shepherdess, and John Muir's fever dwell here in a brilliant array of forms. A book to savor and celebrate."—Alison Hawthorne Deming, author of Zoologies: On Animals and the Human Spirit
Other Titles from Pacific Northwest Poetry Series
Other Titles in POETRY / American / General