What We’re Reading

by Ann Kolakowski

I am currently enrolled in a nine-month certification course related to my job, so the chapbook format is the perfect fit for my highly compressed reading-for-pleasure time. Chapbooks are like potato chips: it’s impossible to consume just one—and who would want to!? Easy on the wallet and highly portable, the best are little works of art (letterpress! silkscreened covers!) filled with works of art.

Several of my poet-friends have their own chapbooks forthcoming later this year, and I’m looking forward to adding them to my collection; in the meantime, among the ones I’ve most enjoyed is Shadow of Wings (http://mainstreetrag.com/bookstore/product/shadow-of-wings/), published in 2012 by Robert A. Ayres. It’s a lovely collection of contemplation and praise informed by the natural beauty of south central Texas.  

I immediately recognized “The Neighbor’s Elm” as a poem I first encountered in a workshop in 1997. I liked it just as well—and maybe more—the second time around.