cover image The Poems of Rita Mae Brown

The Poems of Rita Mae Brown

Rita Mae Brown. Crossing Press, $10.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-89594-247-0

As a poet, Brown has a decidedly tin ear. First published in 1971 and 1973 as The Hand that Cradles the Rock and Songs to a Handsome Woman, these poems are concerned primarily with the women's movement and women loving women. A few titles: ""Dancing the South to the True Gospel or the Song My Movement Sisters Let Me Sing,'' ``Hymn to the 10,000 Who Die Each Year on the Abortionist's Table in Amerika,'' ``A Short Note for Liberals,'' ``To My Dream Butch Straight Lady Who Bolts Her Doors but Leaves Her Windows Unlatched.'' To her credit, Brown's introduction to the poetry is modest, charming and self-effacing. She reports that she began writing the novel Rubyfruit Jungle when she realized that there was no money in poetrya lucky break for author and readers alike. Fans of Sudden Death and Southern Discomfort may nevertheless want to check this one out. However lacking in craft her poetry may be, Brown's forceful and ebullient personality comes through with a punch. (December)