cover image Rainbow Remnants in Rock Bottom Ghetto Sky

Rainbow Remnants in Rock Bottom Ghetto Sky

Thylias Moss. Persea Books, $9.95 (71pp) ISBN 978-0-89255-157-6

In the poem ``Green Light and Gamma Ways,'' the poet sees the Statue of Liberty not as a symbol of freedom but as a ``minority,'' her skin the shade of a ``ridiculous Martian fable. And not a man. / Handicapped, disabled.'' In this challenging, heartfelt collection, Moss ( Pyramid of Bone ) refuses to accept things as they are--or, more appropriately, as our white, patriarchal society would have us see them. An acute combination of experience and imagination has given the poet a realistic vision, one forever scarred by the blows inflicted by a racist, sexist world. The nurturing love of women, on the other hand, is a cause for joy and hope. ``Mother's love triumphs,'' Moss declares. The inspiration of a grandmother is sensual as well as spiritual: ``Honeyed memory of my grandmother in /which I drench myself, pour over myself / one of her tight hugs.'' Moss's writing expertly simulates the processes of her fecund mind, with thoughts overlapping and veering off on tangents that bring us back, with fuller knowledge, to a poem's central concern. This volume was selected by Charles Simic as a winner of the 1990 National Poetry Series pk competition. (May)