Reading William Reichard’s As Breath In Winter on a hot June day in England is rather like eating ice cream. That delicious ice cool cover; inside such visceral, urgent poems!
He had me at the opening line of the opening poem: ‘I have come all this way to see you.’ I wanted to know all his tribulations, all the aching and struggle. And then life and shadows and all our limitations get in the way: it is ‘a clumsy dance.’
Reichard knows how to nail a neat first line. I also loved the opening of ‘Oculus’: ‘To see, she opens her body’. As a woman who writes, and who is acutely aware of how the state of her body so affects her ability to see, as in, write, this image completely resonated with me.
Reichard gives us a stack of items for the librarian—the precious, the impossible and the poignant; a stranded rocket on the launch pad and a stranded conversation: ‘We finally run out of/things to say’; and the beautiful understatement of ‘There’s much to say about everyday life’: all held me as I travelled with the poet ‘through time, fires [and] houses buried.’
—Carol Rowntree Jones for MIEL
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11 x 17 cm
staple-bound & wrapped in a paper band
printed & bound in Nottingham, UK, by Tompkin Press Co., Ltd.