A political, spiritual Palestinian-American from Texas, Naomi Nye illuminates some of the subtler aspects of human experience in this volume of poems drawn from three previous collections. She ponders everything from the donor of a now-broken music box to a little girl clenching her fist against death, using absolute clarity of imagery and a gentle, authoritative voice to make her visions accessible. She also poses such unanswerable questions as "What makes a man with a gun seem bigger/ than a man with almonds?" -- making it a thought-provoking read.
From Library Journal
While Nye's technique is nearly flawless, this is not the mere shaping of superficial little boxes. Lyrically, calmly, she describes an Edenic landscape where "hands are churches that worship the world." Nye is philosophical, yes, but too delighted with her own findings to impose them on a reader. Instead, we find integrity, sincerity, and gentleness: the poet trying to remember who gave her a now-broken music box, the little girl making a fist against death, the woman who can "find holiness in anything/that continues." The poems in the last third of this book focus directly on Nye's Palestinian American heritage, as the poet tours the Mideast, inquisitive and frustrated. Drawn from three previous collections, this selection coincides with the publication of Red Suitcase, a volume of new work (BOA Editions, 1994). All in all, an accomplished writer still searching for a unique voice.Rochelle Ratner, formerly Poetry Editor, "Soho Weekly News," New York
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.