Many Waters: Poems From West Virginia
Water images abound in this book. Water drowns people. Raises them up. Water pours from the sky, springs from earth. Water nourishes life. Destroys land and property. It is everywhere in these poems: the same, yet different. Each poem comes from a different moment in one woman's life - a woman who evolved in the poet's imagination from the many years of living in a state where floods are constant as the power of human emotions and the belief that "love is stern as death ... many waters cannot quench it, neither can the floods drown it." -- Song of Solomon 8:6,7.
"The open and generous feelingness of this woman's rare personality is manifest and is, as we have discovered too similarly in Katherine Mansfield's tremulously evocative stories, brittle with hope." -- Dusty Dog Reviews
"The poems, many of which have appeared in such fine journals as Nimrod, The Kenyon Review and Southern Poetry Review, are brilliant with language but deep with an understanding of human suffering and endurance. . . . McKernan is finest in her narrative work, her story-telling that elevates plain lives by the touch of a fiery tongue." - Times-West-Virginian
". . . Llewellyn McKernan has established herself as a poet's poet. She's even more than that, though, for her work is attractive to all kinds of readers. . . . .Her versatility can only be suggested. . . " - Barbara Smith
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