In these poems Chapman deals with the isolation and challenge of the first pandemic year in Madison, WI: local disasters; the loss of usual occupations and friends, the fear of contagion, her husband's sudden triple-bypass surgery, the collapse of time into old memory spaces—and the restorative companionship of the green world, its creature birds and chipmunks come to drink at the water bowl, her pod of hiking friends setting out on distanced walks along Dane County's Ice Age Trail in below-zero temperatures.
"This collection spans a critical year, both universally and personally for the author. The entire planet is threatened by a lingering pandemic, while the poet’s own spouse must undergo serious surgery. She faces up to them with keen observations and abiding faith in the planet’s cyclical rejuvenation. Growing things, in all their phases, whether seasonally alive or in quiet dormancy, are lessons in hope. Garden offerings are precious. Also crucial among these gifts of the earth are animals and birds, so many of which are valued companions in the poet’s daily life."—Jeri McCormick, author of Marrowbone of Memory:Ireland’s Great Famine”
"Robin Chapman’s gaze takes in the perils and beauties of the natural world, and of her rampageous fellow humans, with a fearless open heart. She can be tough. When she looks up to see an eagle’s talons clawing into the fish it holds, she takes it as a lesson: dig into the moment. But she also burrows like an inspired beekeeper into the invincible sweetness of everyday life and holds it out to us with both hands." —Margaret Benbow, author of Boy into Panther and Other Stories
Robin Chapman is the author of ten books of poetry, including most recently THE ONLY HOME WE KNOW (Tebot Bach), poems about our fragile world, and Six True Things, poems about growing up in the Manhattan Project town of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Other collections include the Posner Poetry Award-winning books THE WAY IN and Images of a Complex World: The Art and Poetry of Chaos (with J.C. Sprott's fractals). Her book The Dreamer Who Counted the Dead received a Wisconsin Library Association Outstanding Poetry Book of the Year Award, and her book ABUNDANCE received the Cider Press Editors' Book Award. She has also co-edited the anthologies On Retirement and LOVE OVER 60: AN ANTHOLOGY OF WOMEN'S POEMS, and collaborated with composers, painters, textile artists and scientists in producing work.