A Review of Palindrome by Linda Parsons

It is a gift when any careful reader enters your poems and infuses them with her own life. I am many times blessed that poet Linda Parsons chose to craft her response to Palindrome into this review, published in  Still: The Journal. The review begins:

“The word palindrome was coined in the seventeenth century from the Greek palin (again) and dromos(way, direction). In her sixth poetry collection, Palindrome, Pauletta Hansel gleans layer upon layer from this term for words and phrases read the same in either direction. Both poet and caregiver as her mother spirals into vascular dementia, she expertly uses the metaphor of a palindrome’s reversal as mirror, teeter-totter, braid of past with present, even as a needle’s eye passed through to examine that most complex of relationships, mother and daughter, complicated further in the lens of loss and debilitation. ”

I also invite you to read Linda Parson’s moving poem about her father who, like my mother, suffered from dementia, in the same issue of Still, entitled “Pie Lee.”

(While you are there, check out my poem, Morning, Loretto Motherhouse, Late November and all the fine work by writers such as Karen George, Michell Castleberry, Kari Gunter Seymour, Melissa Helton, Thomas Alan Holmes, Keith Stewart, Robin Talbert, Lana Austin and more!)

Author: Pauletta Hansel

Pauletta Hansel is a poet, memorist, teacher and editor. She was Cincinnati's first Poet Laureate from April 2-16-March 2018. Pauletta is author of seven poetry collections, Coal Town Photograph (Dos Madres Press, 2019); Palindrome (Dos Madres Press, 2017; winner of the 2017 Weatherford Award), Tangle (Dos Madres Press, 2015), The Lives We Live in Houses (Wind Publications, 2011), What I Did There (Dos Madres Press, 2011), First Person (Dos Madres Press, 2007) and Divining (WovenWord Press, 2002). Her poetry has been featured recently in journals including Rattle, Talisman, Now & Then: The Appalachian Magazine, Appalachian Journal, Atlanta Review, Postcards Poems and Prose and Still: The Journal, and anthologized in Listen Here: Women Writing in Appalachia; Motif: Come What May; and Motif: All the Livelong Day. Pauletta leads community poetry workshops and retreats in the Greater Cincinnati area and beyond, and has served as Writer-in Residence at Thomas More College in her native Kentucky. She is a co-editor of Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, the literary publication of Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative. Pauletta received her MFA from Queens University of Charlotte.

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