The mere presence of her was the necessary part.
Over-hearers, their little coves of ears
were, of course, listening in.
Together, we could hear history
painting a diagram of itself, and things began
to form layers. My mother’s hand
upon the pillow, the pillow soft upon the bed.
©Lynley Edmeades from As the Verb Tenses Otago University Press 2016
This mother poem is a perfect advertisement for a collection that shows how real life can give poetry a vital tang; that poems excised from who you, where you and where you are from sometimes lack the power to kick start your heart from daily routine. The gaps are resplendent. The detail: lyrical, tender, uplifting, deliciously layered.
Everything slows down to a leisurely pace.
Elsewhere in the book: ‘You’re wondering what to do with this, this slowness.’
Absorb and connect. Absorb and connect. This is a terrific debut (oh! and a stand-out cover).