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Musical map-making May 27, 2006
Sometimes for no particular reason, these lines start singing to me: "Out of the bunch grass/ out of the cheat grass/ a bunch of grass waddles/ my way." It is Ingrid Wendt's description of a porcupine at dusk, and I see the porcupine and the dusk as I hear the music of Ingrid's voice. Throughout this collection, Surgeonfish, the natural world in it's most minute and majestic manifestations comes to us through the voice of this skillful, loving poet.
The poems take us traveling to northern Norway, to Greece, to an Amish farmhouse, to Italy, to Oregon, to Idaho--gathering in the years of our shared history as they traverse the miles. Their scope is large, their language is specific. They do not shy away from the political or the deep sorrows of our shared life; yet at their heart is a hard-earned and beautiful joy.
Ingrid Wendt digs deep for the beauty of these poems, and then she brings it straight to us.