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"What is poetry in wartime?"
Date of Review: 
Sep.05.2008
Reviewer: 
Louis McKee
Source: 
Library Journal

"What is poetry in wartime?" News anchors around the world apologize for showing explicit footage, but, as one Al Jazeera broadcaster says, "The world should know the truth." Rich has seen more of the world than most of us, and her poems bring back a truth we are unlikely to encounter anywhere else. As an election supervisor in Bosnia, a Fulbright fellow in South Africa, and a human rights trainer in Gaza, she has witnessed the horrors of war and seen ravaged nations and their scarred people. "What saved me was geography," she says, referring you to her childhood and her father's attentions. It is our turn now, and she shows us that there is much more to the world than most of us know: the Irish Jewish Museum in Dublin, a woman endlessly sweeping the wind-blown Sahara from her room, the women of Kismayo, who protest for peace by baring their breasts: "Simply the women/ of the town telling their men// to take action, to do something/ equally bold." We see maps and drag our fingers along spinning globes, but we are rarely aware of all the places we have left our fingerprints. Rich is a traveler and an observant one at that, with a keen attention to detail and a wonderful ear for the sounds and rhythms of place that make these lyric poems a delight. Highly recommended.

—Louis McKee, Painted Bride Arts Ctr., Philadelphia

Rich, Susan. Cures Include Travel. White Pine, dist. by Consortium. 2007. 106p. ISBN 978-1-893996-75-5. pap. $14. POETRY

Cures Include Travel