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By Barbara Crooker
PO Box 541106
Cincinnati, Ohio 45254
78 Pages/ 51 Poems
Review By Mary Jo Balistreri
" Start spreading the news," she says. " Everyone Iíve ever loved is
here today, even the dead." Like bubbles rising in a fluted glass,
they spill out, run over. These lines from Crookerís introductory
poem, "Line Dance," set the tone for the entire book. She extends a
life-line, ad infinitum, inclusive to all who partake in the
exhilarating dance of life, and that is no less than all living things.
Whether it is making gravy, using the " odd bits and pieces that
could be discarded" to make a richer broth, or the jazz of early
summer in "Hard Bop"" where the muffled song of the tires, or the
percussion of wind help create the riff and scat of rhythm and
blues, nothing is left out.
There are heart-wrenching poems about a sonís autism, the loss of
a child, poems of Paris, from small outdoor cafes to the Eiffel
Tower, from the Camargue and flamingoes to the Luxembourg
Gardens. Nothing is left out, even the smallest insects in Listen help
sing the song of life. This is a book that rejoices in the dance,
without sugar-coating the hard process of learning. Line Dance
sees the world whole, and offers it back to us with new eyes.