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What All the Sleeping is For
by Amy Meckler

Category: Fiction / Literary
70 pages; ISBN: 0967349540

Rating: 10/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Carolyn Howard-Johnson


Reviewed by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, columnist and reviewer for MyShelf.Com and author of “This is the Place” and “Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered”

For centuries poetry was primarily the purview of men. There were exceptions, of course, but even then the poetry almost always confirmed its heritage subtly, like tiny, silver pox scars that are barely evident years after the fever has faded. Amy Meckler’s poetry is not like that. It vibrates with who she is and who she is “woman.”. Who she is is also definitely “poet.”

The poetry in “What All the Sleeping is For” is introspective, personal. It examines birth and death and their connection and gentle, caring love. It would be almost impossible to open this book to a poem that will not affect you at the core. One of my favorite love poems is called The Center. Like a little flash fiction story, it tells of a rain soaked mattress and how it could easily have divided lovers—skin from skin—but didn’t.

A reader need go no further than the first poem, though, to know the strength of this book. It is called To Thomas Hardy . It was first published in the Atlanta Review. “You were born dead, no heartbeat, no breath,” Meckler says. She is speaking to Hardy himself and we want to learn more. Yearn to learn more.

(Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s first novel, “This is the Place,” has won eight awards.
Her newly released “Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remember” has won two.
Her work in progress is a book of poetry called “Skyscapes: A Woman's View.”
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