The pieces in this book focus on nature, healing, and other topics. The book is divided into sections, each beginning with quotes from others. An entire part is dedicated to poems inspired by the weekly challenge on Coleen Chesebro’s blog.
I like the variety of poetry forms used in this book, including villanelles, pantoums, and acrostics. I found her pieces about her family moving and especially enjoyed “A Walk on the Beach,” since that’s one of my favorite pastimes when visiting my brother in Florida. Because some of the poems are about spring, this would be the perfect time to read this collection.
The poems in this little volume reflect on spirituality, nature, and other topics. Some have reference to certain aspects of Jewish culture, and notes with more information are included. An introduction explains how poetry sustained the author after her vision loss.
I met Joan a year or so ago when she joined Behind Our Eyes, an organization of writers with disabilities, of which I’m now president. Despite being totally blind, her poems display such vivid imagery. Each piece’s title gives you a basic idea of what it’s about. My favorite, “Tire Swing,” transported me back to a time when my father rigged a similar contraption in our front yard when I was growing up. Also, I found her glimpses into Jewish culture fascinating. Even if you’re not Jewish, these works should resonate with you, and this book is definitely not a long read.
From the author of Upwellingand Follow Your Dog comes a short collection of poetry and prose on family vacations, vision loss, animals, and other topics. It also includes a work of flash fiction. An introduction by the author explains what inspired this compilation.
I met Ann Chiappetta through Behind Our Eyes, an organization of writers with disabilities. I like how she writes about the lighter and darker sides of life. My favorite piece is one in which she describes how she rescued two baby sparrows, only one of whom survived, and the hard lesson her eight-year-old son learned from this experience. I recommend this book, which not only provides insight on vision loss but on other negative and positive aspects of life.
I’ve updated the fiction, nonfiction, and poetry sample pages on my website. I’ve already posted these pieces here, but if you missed them or want to read them again, you can check them out at the above links. Enjoy!
This collection starts with a prologue in which the author, who is also an artist, describes how knitting sustained her during difficult times after she lost most of her vision in 2007. The poetry and prose that follow are divided into twelve sections, one for each month of the year. Some pieces reflect the time of year while others discuss the author’s faith in God, nature, art, music, and other topics.
My favorite piece is “A Wintry Tale” because it reminds me of many tumbles I took in the snow when I was younger due to my lack of vision. I believe Lynda was still sighted at the time of this story, so I found that refreshing. My second favorite is “A Pennsylvania Christmas” because it brings back memories of my own childhood Christmases, even though I’ve never received coal in my stocking.
I’ve known Lynda for years through our association with Behind Our Eyes, a not-for-profit organization for writers with disabilities. I’ve always been amazed by how, despite her sight loss, her appreciation of art and nature comes through in her vivid descriptions. Even if you have normal vision, this book will open your eyes, ears, and heart to life’s wonders.
The words I’m using synonyms of are “thawing” and “end.” You’ll note that I cheated just a bit by putting “thawing” in the title, but I’m sure that’s acceptable. You can click the Play button below the poem to hear me read it.
I want the polar vortex to conclude.
Who knows if or when that will happen?
Is the groundhog’s prediction right?
Is spring around the corner?
Will snow and ice soon melt?
Will it get warmer
with skies more blue?
Will plants bloom?