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What to Make of It, Poems by Pamela Harrison
What to Make of It is a tour through personal and external history, tracing the development of a relationship against the backdrop of the later 20th century. Pamela Harrison’s powerful poems give narrative and lyric voice to larger forces, tracing how they intertwine through individual lives.
Sample Poems by Pamela Harrison
“This collection gives voice in haunting, acute language to the wages of experience. The tones run a great gamut—from ruefulness to awe to misery to loving joy—but they are all convincing. Quite literally this is a book that covers the planet as it imaginatively records the narrator’s coming and going in diverse societies and climes. Pamela Harrison braids hard outcomes and beautiful moments, the nonchalance of the natural world and the yearning of the human one. These poems do not moralize yet they offer genuine, at times profound, lessons from a thoroughly lived life.”—Baron Wormser
“In What to Make of It, Pamela Harrison travels with her doctor husband from Canada’s arctic to Central America, and to points far east and west between, as they do what she is too modest to name good works. (How refreshing in our time!) The collection—whose extraordinary formal suppleness matches its spiritual—shows this affecting author’s genuine maturity: like us all, she’s tempted on one hand by ‘A Dream of Eden’ and on the other occasionally discouraged by the world’s rawness. Harrison’s poems see life steadily and whole, including the moving and evolving relationship between this admirable wife and her admirable spouse. The title of the final, wonderful poem might perfectly fit the book’s themes at large: ‘Love’s inventory.’”—Sydney Lea
“Lusciously descriptive and unerringly musical, Pamela Harrison’s book, What to Make of It, plumbs the depths of how beauty and suffering, fecundity and frailty, the exotic and the intimate, conspire to illuminate nature and culture and our own bruised and bruising human part in their complexities. These poems dive deep, again and again deeper, to express longing for a better world.”—Barbara Ras
ISBN 978-1936370900, 88 pages, $18.00