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Secret Look: Poems

A chance look in the OPAC at Yale found this book lost in the statcks with an incorrect barcode. No one had looked at it in thirty years it seemed. Jessamyn West is better known for her prose, but her command of the language is so strong that seeing what she can do with poetry is worth a look at this book. Many of her poems dwell on traditional themes such as nature, relationships and observations on daily living. A few poems notably depart from this theme including one on war and another one whose name I have forgotten that seems to be a poem explaining why no one calls her Mary anymore.

The poems in general display an impressive lexicon, interesting rhyme variations and reveal the practiced observer that West was. It’s a lovely little book worth tracking down if you’re a fan of her more poetic work.