Francesca Bell’s Bright Stain, Reviewed by Cindy Hochman

Francesca Bell Bright Stain Red Hen Press Reviewer: Cindy Hochman The first poem in Francesca Bell’s sophisticated and street-wise collection Bright Stain begins, like any coming-of-age story worth its salt, with reluctant innocence. Little mouse, lying white on your side like a child in a christening dress— … but snake isn’t interested. … refusing to […]

John Fry’s with the dogstar as my witness, Reviewed by Cindy Hochman

John Fry with the dogstar as my witness Orison Books Reviewer: Cindy Hochman The seeming contradiction of religion is that it often perpetuates the very problems it is asked to resolve, especially for someone who wants to believe but whose fundamental values are antithetical to its core tenets. It is no wonder, then, that “in […]

Gail Wronsky’s Imperfect Pastorals, Reviewed by Cindy Hochman

Gail Wronsky Imperfect Pastorals What Books Press Reviewer: Cindy Hochman What did you think it would be this life all dining on violets and intravenous moonbeams? —“Selectively, using your fingernails” The good news is that although Gail Wronsky’s Imperfect Pastorals is heavily steeped in the major works of Roman poet Virgil, you need not be […]

Lynn Schmeidler’s History of Gone, Reviewed by Cindy Hochman

Lynn Schmeidler History of Gone Veliz Books Reviewer: Cindy Hochman And I have no face, I have effaced myself —Sylvia Plath, “Tulips” A surefire way to get a reader’s attention is to start off with the bona fide disappearance, draped in mystery, of a writer. Throw into the mix the fact that this literary wunderkind […]

Brett Evans’ & Christopher Shipman’s Keats Is Not the Problem, Reviewed by Cindy Hochman

Brett Evans and Christopher Shipman Keats Is Not the Problem Lavender Ink Reviewer: Cindy Hochman A poem should not mean But be. —Archibald MacLeish, “Ars Poetica” When poems come together in a seemingly disparate fusillade, it is incumbent upon the reader to wade through the maze to get to its core. This joyful and macabre […]