Saturday, June 11, 2011

I wore the ocean in the shape of a girl by Kelle Groom

I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl: A MemoirKelle Groom is the author of 3 poetry collections in addition to this memoir.  Five Kingdoms released in 2010,Luckily (2006) and Underwater City 2004. but before reaching  sucess in the literary world she
had alot of personal demons to fight and conquer first.   In the memoir we go back to 1982 when the author
is a  a pregnant teenager living with her parents.  She is unable to raise the child in spite of the support she
received from her mother who was a teacher at the time and her father who was in the military.  So she will make  what will turn out to be a one of the most difficult decisions in her life by giving her son, Tommy up for adoption to her aunt and uncle.  Fourteen months later she loses him again to  cancer. It's here that we witness
the not so slow  fall into alcoholism as her means of coping with the loss.Even though the author did foreshadow her recovery I have never wanted to see someone recover so badly!  The benefit to reading a memoir  written by a poet is their skillful use of imagery. I felt like I was there with her every step of the way.  It's usually the use of metaphors, etc.. that sets this apart from celebrity memoirs.  The only drawback is the creative license the author sometimes uses that makes it a little incoherent from time to time but still a pretty good read I am giving it 4 stars out of 5.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I would like to thank Free Press(Simon and Schuster) for allowing me the opportunity to review this book, which I don't receive money to do and yes I am a Amazon Associate.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Swerve by Kelle Groom

I think of the man who sat
behind my grandmother's sister
in church and told her
the percentage of  Indian
in her blood calling it out
over the white pews.
I wonder what made
him want to count it
like coins or a grade.
I wish I could hear him
Now when I think her saying
that all of her  Wampanoag blood
in her body would fit in one finger,
 discounting the percentage it seemed, but why was she
such a historian, tracing the genealogy of the llast
Wampanoag  up to her own
children typing it all
on see through paper?
Maybe like me
she felt self conscious
caring about what we're made simpley being satisfied dressing our bodies
and driving them around.
Maybe she felt shy for loving someone
she'd never met, I mean
I do. I think of the knife
cutting into the flesh
and the fork carrying it
to your mouth
I always think of that, the sythe-like movement
single motion, a swerve.
I think of my relative,
the last Wampanoag in the town
walking the streets
with a dollar the town gave him.
Even then what would a dollar buy
a finger of land? If an Indian could have bought land
I think of walking into the almshouse.
The alms falling like figs from trees
something to gnaw on.
I think of the first time  of thanks
before it had a name
when it was just some
relatives of mine keeping
some relative of yours
alive through a cold winter
people stupid enough
to take food from a graveyard
food meant for the dead.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

I wore the ocean in the shape of a girl by Kelle Groom

I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl: A MemoirKelle Groom is the author of 3 poetry collections in addition to this memoir.  Five Kingdoms released in 2010,Luckily (2006) and Underwater City 2004. but before reaching  sucess in the literary world she
had alot of personal demons to fight and conquer first.   In the memoir we go back to 1982 when the author
is a  a pregnant teenager living with her parents.  She is unable to raise the child in spite of the support she
received from her mother who was a teacher at the time and her father who was in the military.  So she will make  what will turn out to be a one of the most difficult decisions in her life by giving her son, Tommy up for adoption to her aunt and uncle.  Fourteen months later she loses him again to  cancer. It's here that we witness
the not so slow  fall into alcoholism as her means of coping with the loss.Even though the author did foreshadow her recovery I have never wanted to see someone recover so badly!  The benefit to reading a memoir  written by a poet is their skillful use of imagery. I felt like I was there with her every step of the way.  It's usually the use of metaphors, etc.. that sets this apart from celebrity memoirs.  The only drawback is the creative license the author sometimes uses that makes it a little incoherent from time to time but still a pretty good read I am giving it 4 stars out of 5.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I would like to thank Free Press(Simon and Schuster) for allowing me the opportunity to review this book, which I don't receive money to do and yes I am a Amazon Associate.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Swerve by Kelle Groom

I think of the man who sat
behind my grandmother's sister
in church and told her
the percentage of  Indian
in her blood calling it out
over the white pews.
I wonder what made
him want to count it
like coins or a grade.
I wish I could hear him
Now when I think her saying
that all of her  Wampanoag blood
in her body would fit in one finger,
 discounting the percentage it seemed, but why was she
such a historian, tracing the genealogy of the llast
Wampanoag  up to her own
children typing it all
on see through paper?
Maybe like me
she felt self conscious
caring about what we're made simpley being satisfied dressing our bodies
and driving them around.
Maybe she felt shy for loving someone
she'd never met, I mean
I do. I think of the knife
cutting into the flesh
and the fork carrying it
to your mouth
I always think of that, the sythe-like movement
single motion, a swerve.
I think of my relative,
the last Wampanoag in the town
walking the streets
with a dollar the town gave him.
Even then what would a dollar buy
a finger of land? If an Indian could have bought land
I think of walking into the almshouse.
The alms falling like figs from trees
something to gnaw on.
I think of the first time  of thanks
before it had a name
when it was just some
relatives of mine keeping
some relative of yours
alive through a cold winter
people stupid enough
to take food from a graveyard
food meant for the dead.

.

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