Congratulations to Luanne Castle for her newest poetry collection Rooted and Winged, published by Finishing Line Press. It explores the relationship between flying and falling, the earth and the sky. Even when soaring, the poetry is grounded in small observations.
The poems of Luanne Castle’s Rooted and Winged are embedded in land and weather. “Bluegills snap up larvae in slivers of illusory light,” she writes early in the collection, hinting at the sensibilities of the companionable speaker who will usher us through the book. She sees. She is open to the world out there. She calls herself “unknown but solid,” a teller of “tiny limitless tales.” She is engaged in the retrieval of generational memory: “one hairbrush, a plastic ball / a swaying branch, leaves decaying / the insides of my grandmothers’ fridges / bubble and pop into shards of memory / dangerous to the touch,” she writes, enacting the progression from concrete detail to concrete memory to the kind of numinous memory that can be combustible. How rare it is, to discover a writer who notices that “Grandma used to stand under the bulb over the sink that haloed her and pearlized the onions she chopped,” who can bring language to this: “When the last star falls to the others, / it darkens like the hush in a theatre, / a twinkling or two from silence.” There is no arrogance in this book, but there is power.Diane Seuss, author of frank: sonnets, Four-Legged Girl, and Still Life with Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl
Luanne Castle’s work has appeared in Copper Nickel, TAB, The American Journal of Poetry, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Verse Daily, Saranac Review, Lunch Ticket, River Teeth, and elsewhere. Her first poetry collection, Doll God, won the 2015 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award and was published by Aldrich Press. To learn more, visit her website.
Rooted and Winged is a fitting title for this collection of poems that plant themselves in reality but often hint at the surreal. Throughout, Luanne Castle has mastered sound and image: “I’ve done my best with feet and fists, my small / lungs blossoming like paper flowers in water…” The poem that lingers most for me is “A Year in Bed, with Windows” in which stark details create a palpable intimacy.Karen Paul Holmes, author of No Such Thing as Distance
To purchase Rooted and Winged, go here.
Two of Luanne Castle’s poems—”One of Her Parents was a Float” and “Girl”—appeared in Issue 25 of Superstition Review.