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really liked it
The cover of this book and its acrylic illustrations containing quilt patterns and images that seem perfectly suited for each poem drew me in from the first time I glimpsed it. Opening the book and reading and then rereading the 14 poems contained within only left me further intrigued. The poet names each of her unrhymed poems after a traditional quilt pattern such as log cabin, wagon wheel or kaleidoscope. According to the note at the front of the book, she chooses to write ten lines of ten syl
This patchwork quilt of poems by Cynthia Grady, who is a poet, a librarian, and a quilter, includes fourteen poems that describe the lives of enslaved people in America. Each poem is named for a traditional quilt pattern, which also echoes the theme and style of the poem.
For example, this is the poem “Log Cabin.”
“The finds of archaelogists beneath
dilapidated cabins down the hill:
dome chicken bones, the skins and skulls of coons
and squirrels – hard remains of suppers stalked
by moonlight, faith,
it was amazing
This poetic masterpiece, inspired by quilting customs kept alive by African slaves, pieces together the plight and daily lives of those enslaved. Quilts have three layers and are diverse in their patterns, so Grady incorporate three references into each of the fourteen free-verse poems: a biblical or spiritual reference, a musical reference, and a sewing or fiber arts reference. The poems’ parallel structures and patterns are mirrors of structures and patterns involved in quiltmaking.