The Best Literary Writing About Mothers and Motherhood

Healing and Recovery – A MER VOX Folio

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Welcome to the March 2021 VOX Folio: Healing and Recovery

In her poem, “I Ask a Pearl Diver to Bring You Back From the Dead,” Joan Kwon Glass writes,

Ribbons of seaweed blossom at our feet and nearby
mollusks spin sand into pearls.
Every darkness we bear hides such small mercies.

The poems in this VOX folio cull the darkness of our recent past for small mercies. We are tired, outraged, and grieving. Tina Cane opens her poem “Hold” describing this witnessing:

Sometimes +++it’s a shock event+++ in lieu of a total coup
an instance more akin+++ to the slow overthrow+++ of familiar systems.

Because trauma is specific, these poems are intensely personal, all giving voice to healing on their own terms. Alexa Doran confronts a political fallout and outrage when she states, “we need to heal from all his holes,” while Erica Charis-Molling asks, “What is it I crave?”

These are muscular poems, hard-edged and as visceral as the son’s wound in Sarah Dickenson Snyder’s “Not Mothering & Mothering,” where the speaker witnesses

The raw bottom bone, the fatty corpuscles,
the red thick blood stilled as if everything
inside his finger was shocked by the deepness. . . .

The landscapes, too, can be tough and sinewy, as in Dara-Lyn Shrager’s “Twenty-One.” Here, a mother searches for her son “in the metal nothing/into the clang of a city with its trapdoors/and sooted drifts.”

We were honored to curate a folio rooted in strength. There is so much work ahead of us, but these poems remind us that our ability to heal is, as Sherine Gilmour writes in “Good Days,” a light that “glows bigger than giants. . . .It glows on and on and on.”

It is our pleasure and honor to present the work of the following poets:

Tina Cane
Erica Charis-Molling
Alexa Doran
Sherine Gilmour
Joan Kwon Glass
Dara-Lyn Shrager
Sarah Dickenson Snyder

We hope you enjoy this folio. Thank you for the time you spend with it.

Jennifer Martelli and Cindy Veach

 

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