Thirty-five poignant and powerful poems, in which the poet performs word ballet, pirouetting her way through regrets, childbirth and parenting, floods and heat waves, and love, both certain and uncertain. Deeply personal and sensual, Hand on My Heart sympathetically plumbs the depths of memory and imagination. Here you will find poems inspired by the Wizard of Oz, fallen giraffes, and Mason jars; laments and praise; what may be love, and what is most certainly love. The poem ">45" won a Jack Kerouac Poetry Prize.
None for Me
After the crash, you must have scattered
Over yards, acres, into the next county or
Even somehow across state lines
Because there is your ponytail
Tumbling down the back of a stranger,
Your eyebrow cocks on an unfamiliar face,
And the shape of your shoulders is silhouetted
In that lit window I pass by at night.
How did all those people end up with a piece of you
And me, left with none?
Hand on My Heart dives into one’s “own mysterious depths/the volcanic source revealed,” as Anara Guard writes in the poem, “Self-Examination.” With great range, Guard explores in lovely language the “Weekly Communion” of trash day, of owls, of the gift of a Mason jar that gets reused again and again. Dip in and savor these poems, one at a time, then return for more sips of poetic nectar.