The Willow Grove by Laurie Sheck
The Willow Grove by Laurie Sheck, faculty, Creative Writing at The New School.
Knopf Doubleday, 2012
Barnes & Noble: Laurie Sheck interweaves the contemporary with the mythic, creating a realm in which such things as radios, skyscrapers, expressways, and mannequins are at once familiar and strange; immediate, yet tinged with the light of distance and myth. It is a realm where faces on a television newscast disappear “into the undertow / of hunger for the next thing and the next,” and mannequins “stand in their angelic armor.”
Placed at intervals throughout these pages is a series of poems entitled “From The Book of Persephone,” poems that explore the underworld through a fractured contemporary lens, depicting it as a psychological landscape of isolation and desire.
As Mona Van Duyn said of Laurie Sheck’s previous book, Io at Night, “When her sensibility and the reverberating myth are in perfect conjunction, the extraordinary happens: the mythical figure enters the poet’s imagination so consumingly that it is impossible to tell whose life, whose feelings fill the form on the page.”