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Lifted to the Wind : Poems 1974-2015 (Paperback) (Susan Gardner)

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Poetry. In her latest book, LIFTED TO THE WIND, Susan Gardner brings us a four-decade retrospective of her poetry, some composed originally in Spanish as well as in the language of Japanese calligraphy. In addition to being a poet, literary editor and the co- publisher of Red Mountain Press, Ms. Gardner is a well-established painter and photographer. Her aesthetic sensibilities in the visual arts are easily evident in her poetry. She gives us a true reckoning of what is and an artist's look at what might be."LIFTED TO THE WIND is artist and poet Susan Gardner's sixth book, a rich collection of poems from over four decades illuminated by seven pages with original brush-and-ink work and one photograph. Her mostly short poems, some in Spanish as well as English, probe the complexities and contradictions of human experience—art, love, loneliness, eros, even war—even as they portray the natural world with vividness and precision: 'Thin ice cracks in tatters' in 'Nebraska Sunrise'; 'Thunder rolls its baritone song' in 'Rain in Santa Clara.' Yet they don't stop there—as we see the girl in 'August' 'listening to the shadows,' and as 'Galaxy' concludes, there's 'Still a trace of red sky beyond the grounded world,' these poems take us to another dimension: they lift us to the wind.—Gordon Ball"It stopped me in my tracks... Poems inspired by art, a process called ekphrasis, are legion, Auden's 'Musée des Beaux Arts' based on Breughel's 'The Fall of Icarus' being one of the best. But what happens when poet and painter inhabit the same body? Well, Susan Gardner's work is what happens. She invites you to see a poem and, I suspect, read a painting. The poems are invitations to set aside your narrative expectations and let the mind rest, take in an image, a detail, participate in a meditative process, a sort of sensory and spiritual inventory. They are painterly snapshots inviting us to view a world largely unmediated, the 'I' noticeably absent, giving precedence to the 'eye.'"—Gary Geddes"Susan Gardner creates a recursive chain of splendid poems in LIFTED TO THE WIND: POEMS 1974-2015. She splashes lasting images across pages, defining aesthetic moments that indeed are 'lifted' outside chronologies. This innovative collection is a primer for other writers—the poet teaches how to sequence a range of works. Her painterly perspective celebrates colors, textures, and shapes. In 'Night Table,' for example, objects framed on a tabletop create an elegant still life. Readers may lose themselves in this and other individual poems—or read the book straight through. In either case, they will return to savor Gardner's words over and over. This book, embellished with the poet's own illustrations, is a lasting work of art."—Denise Low

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