A Passing ISBN: 978-0-992487-3-2; 6 x 9 in.; 54 pages $12.00
The poems in Joan I. Siegel’s A Passing offer startling bardic moments. In a poem’s anguished speaker, a sudden transcendence takes place. In the reader, a sudden awakening ensues from a “window’s shocking brightness,” or a subtle “memory of a window,” or the profound emptiness of “molecules that never touch.” —Sandra Graff
Siegel’s book is a meditation, a held breath, a chord lingered on and released, the silence eloquent as the music. In these poems, memory both preserves and fails, distorts and clarifies. She meets small deaths (a hummingbird, a cat) and large (her own loved ones, and victims of war and the Holocaust) with a steady gaze. But there is also the cherry blooming outside the window, Degas’ dancer, a child’s new language “that sputters off your lips and drops / ripe as a juicy pear in my lap.” —Mary Makofske
Author of Hyacinth for the Soul (Deerbrook Editions, 2009), Light at Point Reyes (Shabda Press 2012) and The Fourth River (Shabda Press 2015) as well as co-author of Peach Girl: Poems for a Chinese Daughter (Grayson Books 2002). Siegel is recipient of Poetry Quarterly’s Rebecca Lard Award, New Letters Poetry Award and Anna Davidson Rosenberg Prize. A finalist for the Pablo Neruda Prize, she was an International Merit Award Winner in Atlanta’s 2014 International Poetry Competition. A recipient of the State of New York Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching, published widely in journals and anthologies, Siegel lives in the lower Hudson Valley of New York State. Emerita Professor of English at SUNY/Orange, she volunteers at a local no-kill animal shelter, tends to 10 rescued cats, plants a summer garden and watches it grow.