The Dirty Side of the Storm

Overview

"At once a love song and a dirge to a landscape being swallowed by the waters that define it."—St. Petersburg Times

An evocative meditation on destruction and creation, the sacred and ephemeral, along Louisiana's coast. In poems that bear witness to the eroding bayou country and its Cajun culture, Martha Serpas venerates a vanishing landscape defined by water—sensuous, fecund, and destructive. As marsh turns into gulf, identity and consciousness are transformed as well. Serpas's...

See more details below
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (11) from $1.99   
  • New (4) from $10.86   
  • Used (7) from $1.99   
The Dirty Side of the Storm: Poems

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.49
BN.com price
(Save 24%)$13.95 List Price

Overview

"At once a love song and a dirge to a landscape being swallowed by the waters that define it."—St. Petersburg Times

An evocative meditation on destruction and creation, the sacred and ephemeral, along Louisiana's coast. In poems that bear witness to the eroding bayou country and its Cajun culture, Martha Serpas venerates a vanishing landscape defined by water—sensuous, fecund, and destructive. As marsh turns into gulf, identity and consciousness are transformed as well. Serpas's verses invest paradox with her own defiantly spiritual meaning.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The Gulf Coast and especially the Louisiana bayous, with their marsh grass, generations of fishermen, well-known natural disasters and ever-present coastal erosion, give Serpas's second volume both its strong flavor and its dominant subjects. Generations of Cajuns view "the steady vanishing/ Of your birthplace before your eyes," but also the beauty of "a blue heron lifting from brown stubble/ Light off bleached barnacles, helicopter blades// Beating the marsh into submission." Some poems take names from local landmarks ("Bayou Lafource," "Bully Camp Road"), others from general truths ("Faith in Florida"), but almost all respond to the southeastern coast, extending from Houston (where Serpas once lived) to Tampa (where she teaches now), from the dilapidation of "The Boat Shed" to "A pink-taffeta-ball-gown-and-bourbon/ sky." Curtains of descriptive lushness gather, then part, to reveal human vulnerability or human affection in Serpas's carefully clarified unrhymed stanzas. Explorations of Christian tradition and belief form an undercurrent throughout Serpas's work: "corrupted flesh confirms our/ Deepest knowledge," even though "the land wants the water,/ to be the water, to forget." Though Serpas (Cote Blanche, 2002) finished all but one of these poems before Katrina, the shadow of hurricane, flood and subsequent carnage falls over these Louisiana laments. (Nov.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal

Serpas's (Côte Blanche) pre-Hurricane Katrina poems detail the destruction to the ecosystem of the Barataria-Terrebonne Estuary south of New Orleans. The dirty side of the system, the eastern side, receives the brunt of the storm's damage, and strong imagery and spirituality infuse discussion of this fragile landscape. The poems and settings are defined by water, which swallows both marsh and identity and redefines the borders between. Serpas bears witness to changing nature and nature's subsequent changing of humans: "Rain on the water's vinyl surface:/water that glitters,/water that hardly moves,/its branches witness to trees,/to fronds, leaves, crab floats, pilings,/ shopping carts, appliances-/the divine earth takes everything/in its wounded side/ and gives back wholeness." Using language that is local, sensuous, and precise, these narrative lyrics consider the storm's destruction and the possibilities of redemption within the frame of religious spirituality. While these are not religious poems per se, each is a manifestation of the divine in devastation. Highly recommended for general poetry collections.
—Karla Huston

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393331431
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/28/2008
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Martha Serpasis a native of Galliano, Louisiana. She is currently an associate professor of English at University of Houston. Her previous collection of poems is called Côte Blanche.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)