cover image Now You Can Join the Others

Now You Can Join the Others

Taije Silverman. Louisiana State Univ., $19.95 trade paper (112p) ISBN 978-0-8071-7853-9

In her incisive second book, Silverman (Houses Are Fields) dives headlong into the perils, pleasures, and mundanities of marriage and motherhood. At moments, one’s partner might be a beautiful mystery: “I ask if you like peanuts/ and you say you love peanuts, and it’s as if we’ve just met// and are fools for each other,” while at others, sadness between the couple is described as “looser// than the slumped brown bird I eased the stroller over/ so our toddler wouldn’t see.” Silverman depicts grief as a constant companion over many years, stitched into the fabric of one’s life: “I remember my mother’s shape in the darkness/ like a pattern, sew it to the quilt, dip the stitch, pull.” Though many of the poems feature a world-weary tone and a kind of quiet desperation, Silverman articulates an appreciation for everyday dependability that is placidly moving: “The moon is an old symbol. It follows us/ down every block like a dog, and is dumb/ as a dog, and as patient, and loyal, and willing.” With an understated confessional tone, and a musical, mellifluous style, these deceptively direct poems build to a visceral crescendo. (Nov.)