Women of Plums

Dolores Kendrick, Author Quill $8.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-688-08972-6
A slave dresses in silk, waiting for her master to visit her bed; another, poised on the auction block, begs not to be separated from her daughter; a freed woman finds herself unable to make decisions after a lifetime of being denied that right. In this unusual collection built on historical testimony, Kendrick ( Through the Ceiling ) allows her subjects the medium of poetry through which to speak about their loneliness, bondage and loved ones--mothers, children, men. Voices vary in tone and in diction--some are lyrical, others matter-of-fact; dialect alternates with standard speech--but vigorously announce human strength. However, Kendrick's achievement is uneven: although the poems limn scenes dramatically and convey character with admirable concision and compassion, they tend to effect similar perspectives to themes oft-repeated. In addition, many read like prose; purely verbal surprises are rare events. Occasionally, Kendrick veers to the opposite extreme in self-consciously literary efforts. (July)
Reviewed on: 07/06/1989
Release date: 07/01/1989
Paperback - 124 pages - 978-0-939618-08-8
Hardcover - 124 pages - 978-0-688-08347-2
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