First runner-up for the 2022 Eric Hoffer Grand Prize in Poetry and 2022 First Horizon Award finalist.
This visceral debut collection is a dance across the decades. In thirty spare and gripping poems, Diane Lowell Wilder recasts midlife as a second coming of age: a time of new vulnerabilities and strengths, breakdown and renewal, constraint and release. In the process, she lands on vital sources of affirmation and resilience—in being a parent, in embracing change, in letting go, in reclaiming agency. Here is the aftermath of divorce and the landscape of later romance, the strain of watching parents age, the anxieties of motherhood, an aching hip, bold moves, fresh starts. Ever aware that the past and future are always bound up in the present, Wilder shows us how a poetic exploration of personal history, even when it means wrestling with loss, can help us gain perspective and maybe even a new sense of freedom and direction.
"At first, the pages feel quiet and tender, but they grow louder and bolder as the reader continues, each pebble’s ripple adding to a greater tide of authentic reckoning. When executed well, poetry consists of only what is necessary—the best words in the best order to articulate the greatest truth. This collection is executed at the highest level, like a meal at a Michelin-star restaurant. Each poem is delicately presented and reverberates within the reader with ample and surprising complexity. We are moved to engage, reflect, and participate in the work."
- The Eric Hoffer Award
Poetry. Women’s Studies.
Review @ Forward Reviews Review @ Indie Reader Review @ Independent Book Review Marc Zegan ReviewJune Road Press WebsiteAuthor WebsiteFirst Runner-Up for the 2022 Eric Hoffer Grand Prize2022 First Horizon Award Finalist
Diane Lowell Wilder, poet, mother, former competitive ice skater, lover of jazz piano and languages, grew up in Vermont. She attended Swarthmore College and has had a long career in alumni relations and institutional advancement for liberal arts colleges. She lives outside Philadelphia and is active in the city's creative writing community. This is her first published collection.