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by Mary Jo Balistreri
57 poems, 94 pages
Price: $15.95
Publisher: FutureCycle Press
ISBN: 978-1-942371-58-8
Library of Congress Control Number: 2018952393
To Order:


Still is about the many and varied applications of the title-term. Still serves an adjective,
as in "the still body of the young man"; or a noun, as in "the still of the night", and again,
as an adverb, "he still lives with his mother"; "she's still running in circles." The poet
Mary Jo Balistreri, rewards readers many times over with her explorations of just one
word, pregnant with meaning; loaded with potential. Still is hot as blazing firewood,
smooth as a cool drink of cider, biting as a Wisconsin winter, loving as the gentle nudge
of one's mate, saying, Honey, it's time to get up.


Reading Mary Jo Balistreri's Still is an invitation to experience something close
to synesthesia: color, music, language, touch all, blur, merge, and inform each
other in order to get past our everyday assumptions. By paying attention to the
wild silences found in human and non-human worlds, by attending to small
movements and moments, Balistreri's poems tenderly explore and examine our
emotional and lived experiences. Here we find the stories we do not tell, the
questions and memories that stay with us, haunting and ever faithful.
—Sarah Sadie, author of We Are Traveling Through Dark at Tremendous Speeds

Art gives life, music, painting, dance: Still is a testament to the power of art, to the power
art still holds, to the power of being still and entering that place where "another world
—Margaret (Peggy) Rozga, author of Pestiferous Questions, Justice Freedom Herbs,
Though I Haven't Been to Baghdad,
and 200 Nights and One Day>

What healing poems; what exquisite medicine. In "Shifting Sands at Bonita Beach," for
example, Mary Jo Balistreri paints a portrait of an old Everyman with dementia, ending it
with an epiphany: "Perhaps lack of language/is something other than loss."—Karla Linn
Merrifield, poet and editor of Bunchberries; More Poems of Canada


Mary Jo Balistreri is the author of two previous books, Joy in the Morning and
gathering the harvest (Bellowing Ark Press), and a chapbook, Best Brothers (Tiger's Eye
Press). She has published work in Grist, Parabola, Poetry East, Crab Creek Review, The
Examined Life,The Healing Muse, Persimmon Tree, Journal of Modern Poetry,
many others. Her poems have nine Pushcart nominations and four Best of the Nets. She is
a founder of Grace River Poetry, an outreach for churches, women's shelters and schools.
Visit her online at


by Mary Jo Balistreri

Golden leaves baked crisp
steeped in the sky's fragrance

Pumpkins dotting brittle fields
with orange globes of sun

The pond's stone-cold mirror
rebuffing reflection

A white linen tablecloth
to cover the brittle stubble of wheat

Burnished clouds spilling
over the vast vase of earth

Elongated Nordic-blue shadows
crawling out from sprigs of scarlet sumac

All this to celebrate
before the seamless skein of winter  

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