Leaning toward Light
Poems for Gardens & the Hands That Tend Them
by Tess Taylor
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Pub Date 29 Aug 2023 | Archive Date 05 Sep 2023
Storey Publishing, Storey Publishing, LLC
This beautiful poetry anthology offers a warm, inviting selection of poems from a wide range of voices that speak to the collective urge to grow, tend, and heal—an evocative celebration of our connection to the green world.Much like reading a good poem, caring for plants brings comfort, solace, and joy to many. In this new poetry anthology, Leaning toward Light, acclaimed poet and avid gardener Tess Taylor brings together a diverse range of contemporary voices to offer poems that celebrate that joyful connection to the natural world. Several of the most well-known contemporary writers, as well as some of poetry’s exciting rising stars, contribute to this collection including Ross Gay, Jericho Brown, Mark Doty, Jane Hirshfield, Ada Limón, Danusha Laméris, Naomi Shihab Nye, Garrett Hongo, Ellen Bass, and James Crews. A foreword by Aimee Nezhukumatathil, reflective pauses and personal recipes from some of the contributing poets, along with original, whimsical illustrations by Melissa Castrillon, and a ribbon bookmark complete this stunning, hardcover gift format.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 95 members
From this book I learned that 'anthology' means 'a gathering or collection of flowers', and what a beautiful garden this book is!
Leaning Towards Light was an incredible journey into a world most poets overlook; the world of nurturing, planting, and tending our piece and place of nature. And we get to see into the lives of the people who nourish them, and are nourished in return. This was a stunning collection from such an incredible range of poets and writers, it seems that our patches of Earth are dearer than most know, and I hope this is only the first in a long line of collections.
While also the focus of this outstanding book, we are shown that gardens are an ever growing, ever changing medium in which difficult truths of life can be conveyed and understood. I was left speechless by many poignant truths, joyful memories, and grieving admissions, so seamlessly woven into the motions of pruning, staking, and feeding. Possibly the shortest poem in the book, an entry on three little sunflower seeds left me nearly in tears!
So whether you have a green thumb-- or in my case, spend more time trying to save plants than eat from them-- I recommend this to all who knows themselves to be lovers of gardens, life, nature, and poetry.
I cannot wait for it's publication, and will eagerly add to my collection, and share among other green-thumbed enthusiasts!
I loved how this book has these collections of poetry and other forms of writing about the joys of a garden. As well as some recipes and knowing more about planting a garden.
Thanks to the publishers and NetGalley for allowing me to read this book for a review.
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This is a great collection!
This book features thoughtful poems and a recipe for every season. This book includes metaphors for gardening and growth as well as love and seasonality. It's a really great collection that talks about the importance of community and tending ourselves.
A good read!
I am a gardener at heart, soul, and body, so getting approval for Leaning Toward the Light was magnificent. I am so thankful to Tess Taylor, Workman Publishing, and Netgalley for granting me advanced access to this book before its publication date -- August 29, 2023. I plan to feature this book on my Instagram page when my home garden fully flourishes in its prime, which is still before publication day. I love the little recipes and illustrations that filter into the pages of this book and other guest posts from fellow poets and artists alike. Like, completely count me in for the hype. this one.
Leaning toward Light is an absolutely beautiful collection of poetry about gardens and plant life from a wide range of mainly contemporary poets.
With all the negativity and tragedy that’s going on in our world, this book reminds me of the goodness and purity there is in the natural world, and how we can be a part of that. By slowing down and paying attention, we can find peace and connection. A garden teaches us to take care of others as well as ourselves.
The book is set up in the cycle of a garden through the year, from planting and sprouting, to growing and tending, being and waiting, grieving and release, the harvest, all leading to winter. The artwork by Melissa Castrillon is gorgeous.
There are several recipes throughout the book, going along with a season and personal story.
The imagery in the writing is outstanding. I love how gardening teaches us to “live always in the possible” (Jason Myers, “Closing In”). It’s a state in which we should all wish to live.
Special thanks to NetGalley, Storey Publishing, and Tess Taylor for the opportunity to read and review this work.
I really loved this anthology. Every page felt like a gift, like warm sunshine or big fat beads of spring rain.
There is a lot to savor here-- a diversity of voices, perspectives, flavors, smells, emotions. This is a really rich book, and the vibrant artwork throughout is so charming, really complementing the variety of poems, recipes, and prose.
I was pleasantly surprised to see some names I knew like Whitman and Keats included here, but I have to say I enjoyed reading the newer voices, especially those whose experiences are different from my own-- the black women and the immigrant mothers who nourish their families with the fruits of their garden toiling. I appreciated the focus on inclusion and the theme of regeneration. I think they're both particularly pertinent to our point in history.
"Gardeners, are, by their nature, people who believe in regeneration...They understand that the broken world we inherit can also be amended, with compost, worms, and steady tending. They have seen that the tended earth, in turn, offers up radical abundance--"
I also enjoyed the shared recipes, especially the feta, tomato, and basil pie recipe from my home state Mississippi. It was nice to see little glimpses of how these gardener poets use their harvests.
Overall, I think this is a very special little book and would make a fantastic gift for any gardening friends. And I'll definitely be checking out the other work of several of the authors included in this anthology-- I love that it tells you about each of them and their work at the end of the book.
Thank you to NetGalley for this ARC.
A charming book full of gorgeous illustrations and beautiful poetry that inspires the reader through the ups and downs of life through the theme of all things plant love. I LOVED seeing Wendell Berry among the poets! Earth by Cleopatra Mathis resonated so so deeply. There are short essays accompanied by recipes gracing the beginnings of each section, which was such a delicious surprise (pun intended)! Everything about this book would make it a beautiful gift for gardeners, homesteaders, artists, environmentalists, or anyone who appreciates our connection with the botanical world around us.
Thank you, NetGalley!
Gorgeous book, radiating beams of light and green tendrils of love of living things. There are recipes, memories and poems. I love the fresh tomato pie recipe and the interview with the pear tree. It's a lovely, meditative book. Every time I turn the pages, I think of more friends and family who would be equally enchanted by the collection of like minds and sentiments. Lovely book.
And - thoughtful - the end of the book includes a paragraph biography for each creator featured. So sweet.
This is such a sweet, endearing book!
Filled with beautiful poems, illustration, and even recipes, it shares the beauty and joy of gardening and caring for the Earth. I am not a gardener, in fact I don't even have a green thumb, but I do love nature and flowers, so this was a charming read.
The collection of poems is very well curated, including authors I had never heard of but will for sure be looking for next time I go to a bookshop and authors I knew but had never read the particular poem included. I recommend this book to anyone honestly, whether you like gardening or not, you will surely enjoy reading these poems and looking at the beautiful illustrations.
I'm also very excited to try the recipes included in this,
Thank you very much to the publisher and NetGalley for the e-ARC!
This combination of education mixed with poetry and illustrations was amazing. I have been truly inspired.
Tess Taylor is the editor of a beautiful poetry book. She brings the garden into more light. Then, gifts us with the bounty of words, flowers and fruit. Wendell Berry is one of the many famous poets included in "Leaning Toward Light. There is no shame if a poet's words have never come through your lips or been heard by your unsealed ears. Now, today, is the time you waited anxiously for a new seredipitous moment.
Each poem spoons up its worthiness, it's celebration of light, soil and seed. Laura Villareal writes about uncontrolled happiness when the last days of winter forks up beauty after a snow. Gerard Manley Hopkins looks afar and wonders what if. He is filled with praise for what we hold in our hands now. If we hush, there is the infinitesimal movement of a new bud. Again, there is Tess Taylor writing about an Artichoke. Never seen a dragon? There are "dragon scales" you must hand pick.
.The poetry, prose and Art are amazing. There is nothing to take for granted. It is a heavy treasure chest filled with love and connection.By the way, among the flowers and fruit are recipes. Have a cucumber. How much? The only cost is a lullaby. Complimentary copy from Storey Publishing
Over the years, we've turned our Mid-Michigan country acre into a series of gardens, islands of happiness and peace (and sweat and toil, but that's needful, healthy, even) where everything is a treat for the eyes or the taste buds, or both. I can't imagine life without at least a small patch of soil to push a seed into. When it's too cold or rainy to work with the soil, I enjoy staying indoors with a good book. Leaning toward Light is a lovely rainy-day read for any gardener.
The subtitle of this book is what first caught my eye and put a smile on my face. "Poems for Gardens & the Hands That Tend Them". I admired the cover art, and when I opened the book, I saw fresh and vibrant illustrations in harmony with that cover, scattered throughout. I paused to make a cup of herbal tea, as I could clearly see that enjoying this book would require one.
Don't skip over Aimee Nezhukumatathil's introduction, which gracefully ties poetry, life, and gardens together. As you continue reading, you'll find anecdotes, recipes, and of course, lots of poetry. My personal favorites are "Wild Oregano" and "Interview with the Pear Tree", but your favorites will depend on your personal experiences with life, gardens, food, family, love, memories, and who knows what else? Everything is connected. If I counted correctly, 89 different poets are represented in this book, and that makes a remarkable gathering.
So, scrub the soil from your hands and set your galoshes aside, just for a little while. Enjoy a celebration of our gardens. It's bloomin' good!
My thanks to Tess Taylor, Storey Publishing, and NetGalley for allowing me to read a digital advance review copy of this book. This review is my honest and unbiased opinion.
Leaning Toward Light by Tess Taylor is a beautiful anthology and garden book. Readers are introduced to poets overlooked for their attention to the worlds of planting, tending, and nurturing our place in nature. I found this to be a beautiful tribute to Mother Nature in a world slowly filling with “paved paradises” and their encroaching behaviours. This collection pays homage to those who nourish the Earth and find nourishment in return.
This book struck an emotional chord with me, as my late father and I enjoyed spending time in the garden together. The writers and poets pen the hardships and truths of life and how gardening can help them to be conveyed and understood. If you like gardens or nature, this is one to add to your poetry collection. I appreciated Taylor’s efforts to provide a mixture of traditional voices (mainly white males) and contemporary BIPOC voices.
I enjoyed how the collection is divisible by season. Each features a beautiful introduction and a recipe that begs to be tasted. Leaning Toward Light is a book I will be purchasing upon release to add to my nature and garden book collection. I am eager for a new series to emerge each spring. I find the art by Mellissa Castrillon to be so beautiful, and this book can easily be a coffee table all-star.
Thank you to NetGalley and Storey Publishing for an eARC in exchange for my honest review!
You see a woman of a certain age,/not old, yet seeing every sign /of how the world will change her./More and more, you’ll find her in the garden/but not for onions or potatoes. /She wants blooms, color,/a breaking in the earth’s disorder.”
This is a broad collection of poetry, spanning from Keats to some very contemporary pieces, this is not you grandmother’s garden poetry collection. Here there is love and loss and passion. Poems that invoke the pain of history and a demand to be seen.
This is the work we have always know –/ pulling food and flowers from a pile of earth./The difference, now: my father is not a slave,/not a sharecropper
~Ashley M Jones
While the collection is well balanced and organized by seasons, having this many poets from such a wide variety of backgrounds and times creates a little disharmony that I didn’t expect. Maybe this is the point, to keep the collection from becoming too serene or expected.
This is a beautiful collection of poetry. I particularly enjoyed the poems about garden creatures such as the snail. The poems evoke vivid imagery of the miniature worlds in our gardens. This a collection I will return to time and time again.
I've never finished a book faster! It's something I needed to read, and I'm so happy I stumbled upon this wonderful collection of poetry that sings to nature, plants, and gardening. Tess Taylor has succeeded providing the reader with sensory details through the choice of poetry selected with care for each section. I especially loved the provided food recipes before each section of poetry begins. If you love nature, gardening, and poetry that celebrates these earthly elements, this book is definitely a must read!
This was a beautiful anthology and I cannot wait to share this with my friends and family who love gardens as much as I do. Thanks to the author and NetGalley for this ARC!
I don't think I have ever picked up a garden shovel to plant in my life, but reading "Leaning toward Light" made me want to, just to fully understand the beauty behind the process of life. Each selected work, whether it be the infamous "season of mists..." of Keats or an everyday person speaking about their time working with nature and with the earth felt moving and mesmerizing. Each piece of prose gave me the full impression that the authors felt a genuine and true connection to the life they were speaking so highly of, and the book moved my emotions as it waxed and waned out of seasons; the bloom of the spring, the glory of the summer, the battle of the autumn, and the acceptance of the winter. It's poetic, in a sense, to be able to find some sort of connection to nature through these writing pieces, and Taylor's intricate and precise decisions on placement of works to give the maximum emotional effect was extraordinary. I was additionally deeply moved by the bright, opening works of art sprawled throughout the pages, thanks to the amazing work of Melissa Castrillon. I found that the combination of the artistic style to give voice to what words could not, and the placement of words to give sound to what art was unable to made for a full picture of exactly what the book encompasses: the story of plants, nature, and life.
I would highly recommend this book to any individual who is moved by poetry and prose. I do not think in the slightest that you have to be involved with gardening or nature to find joy and serenity in the pages of these pieces. Everyone who enjoys the careful analysis of writing would find something to love within Leaning toward Light.
Thank you to the editor Tess Taylor, publisher Storey Publishing, and as always NetGalley, for an advance digital copy of LEANING TOWARD LIGHT.
Poetry anthologies and collections are definitely not all created equal, and this is one of the superior ones-- <i>if</i> you happen to be interested in gardening. For those readers who aren't, they may have trouble connecting to the work in this book.
My favorite thing about LEANING TOWARD LIGHT is the variety. To start with, there are four sections in the anthology, each dedicated to one of the seasons. Also, this book contains more than just poems for each season, but also essays and even recipes. Additionally, some remarkable writers have contributed to this book, like one of my favorite poets, Mark Doty.
A tiny excerpt:
"...Three hundred bulbs
Huddle under earth,
Three hundred odds against weather.
When the darkness takes over,
I close my eyes. Everything is just where I left it."
from "Daffodils" by Michelle Gillett
Rating: 🌱🌱🌱🌱.5 / 5 seedlings
Recommend? Definitely! Great Spring reading!
Finished: February 16 2023
Read this if you like:
🌦 Changing seasons
📜 Contemporary poetry
📄 Personal essays
🧄 Fresh recipes
This was an incredibly thought out book. I love to garden and I love poetry so this was a wonderful combo for me. Tess has a way about words and I cannot wait to read more by her. HIGHLY recommend.
This is a lovely book of poetry all about plants and the role of gardening in the lives of women.
The different sections are well thought out, and I love that there are recipes at the beginning of the each.
As a plant and poetry lover, I had to read this and I really loved it. This was a must-read in my plant room surrounded by my plants which only added to my experience. If you do read this, you definitely have to do it either surrounded by your plants or out in nature with sunshine. Love that it was split by seasons, so you can experience it despite how it is where you are. There is also so much variety in the poems, so no matter what type of poetry you like there is something for everyone.
Leaning towards Light, edited by Tess Taylor, was a nice anthology of poems that are centered on gardening. I appreciated that Taylor drew from contemporary and traditional voices (I was very excited to see a poem by Jericho Brown). Including recipes was a fun touch but the real star of the show for me were Melissa Castrillon's illustrations - absolutely stunning. The collection would appeal to readers without green thumbs if they want to understand the peace of working with soil.
Thanks to Tess Taylor, Storey Publishing, and NetGalley for allowing me to read a digital advance review copy of this book.
This very special book got me through some very difficult weeks recently. It is delightfully uplifting and positive. The illustrations are an added beautiful extra. I will be buying copies for all of my friends. Highly recommended.
I LOVED it! This is such a beautiful anthology which is perfect for anyone with an affinity or interest in the wonder of the natural world. I loved dipping in and out depending on my mood and really enjoyed the diversity throughout. I felt as if I was moving through the seasons and it helped me to appreciate all those beautifully small but also inextricably linked moments in the growing year. A triumph!
Thank you, Netgalley, Author, and Publisher, for a copy of E-ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I always love poetry, and this is such a beautiful collection of poetry. I love poetry that includes illustrations because somehow it makes me feel calm and understand the meaning more through the illustration offered.
I will definitely re-read this soon and get a copy for my loved one.
What a delight this beautiful collection of poems was. I picked it up here and there and felt instant gratification once reading it. It’s uplifting, thought provoking, and had me so grateful for Mother Nature and this bountiful Earth that we live on. Thanks for the time and dedication that was put into this book. I truly enjoyed it and look forward to purchasing copies as gifts for my fellow gardening friends.
“We all need to put our hands (and shovels and rakes!) into the soil, a dark universe of infinite possibilities if we have but some sun, some water, some care.” - Aimee Nezhukumatahil
Many thanks to Tess Taylor, Storey Publishing, and NetGalley for this arc in exchange for an honest review.
I always feel that poetry finds its way to me when I need it most, poetry after all is one of the most vulnerable acts wherein baring and bearing one’s soul. This poetry collection absolutely found its way to me when I was in a place to read, appreciate and feel all these collective and diverse poems. I loved the recipes that some of the poems and entries had attached to them too!
This is a beautiful anthology (in every version of its meaning, iykyk) that is perfect for springtime.
Gardeners, nature lovers and world wanderers alike will appreciate this collection of poetry. I enjoyed exploring different writers' styles and perspectives on our natural world and tried to read it in pieces so as to sit with different poems for a bit and really think about them.
Some writers I'd heard of and others I hadn't until reading this book but I enjoyed them all and am happy to have some new names to add to my list for future searched.
Leaning toward Light, and anthology, by Tess Taylor captures the essence of art and nature. As I sit and write my own poetry in a poetry garden located on San Juan Island, I fully understand the liberation of a gardens and art. Rather than feel bound and trapped by urban structures, the poetry and the garden work together to spawn thoughts and ideas. This book exemplifies freedom to express art.
Poems in this anthology reflect the essence of poetry. All gardens and the plants within them lean toward a direction. They rely on sun, warmth, and posture to blossom
Any poet knows they lean on something in their words, verse, or intention. The art captures their reality and the expression embraces their fall. Courage and despair receive grace from light. Each poet represents the art. To cultivate more. Depth, color, direction, and motivation appear in the images of flowers. Fruits and vegetables provide the palate for the audience to attain.
Whether the poet is contemporary or of the past, all plants in the garden continue to grow. The art continues to grow with each poem by the nature of the garden.
Over the past year or so, I have been seeking solace in poetry, and have really enjoyed looking at different types of poetry out there for the consumer. When I saw this book, come up as review, I was super excited to check it out! This book did not disappoint, and had beautifully written, and deeply meaningful prose which can absolutely be related to life and joy in growth. Tending to nature in a mindful matter can bring such joy and gratitude to a person.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the eARC copy of this book in exchange for my honest review and opinion.
Absolutely gorgeous. I loved this book, it really is beautiful. As someone who has recently discovered a love for plants and the joy of having them growing around me, this poetry hit hard and I reveled in every page.
Loved this anthology so much- will incorporate into our classroom when we’re learning about plants and growth. A great addition for poetry tea time
This collection of poetry is a delightful collection!
As someone who likes to get their hands dirty and lean into my garden, this collection is welcomed into my home.
Thank you netgalley for this e-galley!
I’d like to thank Tess Taylor, Storey Publishing, and NetGalley for providing me with the digital ARC of Leaning Toward Light.
This book is a beautiful collection of insights from people of various backgrounds and cultures that revolve around our relationship with ourselves and its reflection in nature.
I was enamored with the illustrations and the way they skillfully separated the different stages of growth and tending, capturing the shifting of seasons and the progress of plants. Each chapter felt like a journey through the processes of processing and healing, conveyed by the contributing poets in a way that feels safe and comforting.
My overall takeaway is that, like a garden, we need to tend to ourselves and create an environment that encourages our flourishing. Leaning Toward Light highlights the resilience that both plants and humans possess and celebrates our interconnected journey with the world around us. While there are moments of beauty, there are also day-to-day challenges that can distract us from it.
Whether you are a poetry enthusiast or someone seeking introspection, I highly recommend picking up this book and immersing yourself in its pages, stepping into your own garden.
Thank you to #Netgalley and #Storeypublishing for granting me access to this arc in return for an honest review.
Leaning toward light is a beautiful. meaningful poetry anthology from diverse authors all accompanied with gorgeous illustrations by Melissa Castrillon. The theme is a celebration of plants and the joy they can bring and our compulsive need to grow and nurture gardens and our personal plant collections.
It's a must-buy for me. Highly recommended.
This was a lovely book that felt like a warm hug on a breezy, sunny day. I enjoy anthologies, and reading a collection of various pieces in relation to gardening was relaxing. It was great reading different works and seeing how different authors present their thoughts on gardening and nature. I also liked how this book wasn’t strictly complied of poems, but of personal pieces, paragraphs, recipes and beautiful illustrations. I definitely recommend this book to those who want a happy, light read!
Thank you NetGalley for providing me the opportunity to read this.
"Yet as I weeded through a great stack of gardening anthologies, I realized that many felt quite historic. Others were academic, tracing the history of garden literature from the important insight that the English word paradise comes from a Persian word for "walled garden"."
I am so grateful to say that this book provided by Storey Publishing and Tess Taylor through NetGalley is my very first ARC ever, and wow, what a way to start.
I was instantly drawn to it when I saw the cover, probably Thee most gorgeous cover I've seen in years, and when I read the subtitle, "Poems for Gardens & the Hands That Tend Them", I knew I would love this. I never imagined I needed this book, but after finishing it, I realize how much of me is buried on these pages.
I took the book into my little garden; I'm very fortunate to have a patch of land where the sun hits for hours during the day to grow my treasures. It's wintertime here now, so everyone is kind of asleep, apart from my chives. Do chives ever stop? I don't think I've ever seen a bunch of chives stopping to just relax and not grow anything for a while. The parsley is also doing quite nice, though I haven't picked it up in a while because ants have colonized the inner stems and roots in the shape of an aphid farm. When I saw it at first, I thought they were eggs, but upon closer inspection the eggs had little legs and squirmed a bit whenever touched even slightly. I've read online that you can kill them all off quite easily, but there's no reason to. I respect ants so much. Plus, the parsley continues to strive even with all the aphids. My basils - I have two varieties growing, Genovese and Spicy Globe basil - are the ones who were hit the hardest by the cold, and their yellowing leaves have become a favourite spot for spiders and other tiny crickets. I leave them be as well, but when spring comes, I'll have to rehouse them somewhere. I sat there for hours, listening to the birds and raising my eyes from the pages every once in a while, telling myself: I'm not the only one.
In the book, I could see myself in everyone else's gardens. When they described their growings, I sometimes I had to look something up or another, only to find out that we're all surrounded by so much of the same, everywhere in the world, even if we have wildly different names for this same. I know what they mean when they talk about the shift in the time and space that happens in gardens, even the smallest, most discrete, narrowest ones, surviving despite the odds in the concrete mess of big cities. I know what they mean when they talk of the silence in gardens, how meditative it becomes despite ourselves and our anxieties, how forced we are to be gentle and meticulous in a time of rush and hurry. I cried when I read about the way grief is always around us when we're at a garden, how life and death are always there, at the same time, never apart, one season bringing about openings and closings at once. My absolute favourite poem from the whole anthology - which I learned in this book means "a collection of flowers" - is one called "Feeding the Worms" by Victoria Chang, which begins like this:
"Ever since I found out that earth worms have taste buds all over the delicate pink strings of their bodies, I pause dropping apple peels into the compost bin, imagine the dark, writhing ecstasy, the sweetness of apples permeating their pores."
I cried and laughed when I found this one, because it is something I experienced so strongly it felt like I had written it myself. I used to feel almost scared of worms, of how they squirmed desperately upon being discovered under the earth, how slimy and cold their pale bodies were; ever since I started to garden, I've grown fond of them to the point where I can't move and stir the earth with any tools, afraid I might hurt them. I dig all the way to my wrists, and when I find a worm, long and thick and fat from all the pits and pieces of veggies and tea bags we've left for them, I don't flinch. Rather, my heart warms up. I put it back on the dark chocolate earth with a promise of more. I love worms now. They're what makes the soil breathe!
I don't know if I would've loved this book so much if I wasn't already a baby gardener, if I wasn't already in love with worms and with the spider webs and the silence. I don't know if past me, who was very "urban-minded" and didn't care at all for the birds who woke her up each morning - who hated mornings, imagine that! - would have felt any curiousity or desire if she had read that book. I do however recommend it to everyone, whether you live among abundant greenery that you take for granted or if you have a tiny herb planter section on your apartment windowsill that you treat like daughters. I hope you'll finish the book with a deep yearning to make your thumbs greener - I personally am looking up ways to build an ever larger green box, and I'll be getting oregano and cherry tomatoes seeds later in the week, to hopefully see them blossom around christmas.
A beautiful collection of classic and contemporary poetry themed around gardening. It features short recipes, a handful of brief essays, and beautiful illustrations. I would definitely pick this up in print, due to the gorgeous illustrations and for better flow when reading. Would make a lovely (holiday?) gift or addition to your home library permanent collection.
I adored this book. The recipes, the grouping of works, and the content meant so much to me. I was particularly fond of the poem by Jericho Brown and the Poem about an authors late son. The latter in particular made me cry in the middle of the night while reading it next to my toddler who was struggling to sleep.
If you love the environment, and like poetry (even a little bit) I believe fully that you will find at least a handful of works in this book that will sustain you and make you feel. Most of them did for me, I found myself reading poem after poem, and noting down the authors so that I could find more of their work.
This is a great anthology, and it was clearly compiled with love and atttention.