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Rochelle RatnerIn her tenth volume, Wright proves herself to be one of the most complex, fascinating and ultimately rewarding American poets writing today. Over a 20-year period, she chronicles her journey from a poor Deep South childhood (in an essay, she once compared Arkansas to South Africa) to respected New England professor, from "a girl on the stairs [who] listens to her father/ beat up her mother" (from her 1982 collection, Translating the Gospel Back into Tongues) to the strong and empowering "girl friend" poems new in this collection. Always distinguishing between I and Thou, she identifies with the victim without becoming victimized herself. Even in the sadomasochistic prose poems of Just Whistle (1993), the body takes on a distinct and defiant life of its own, an Other standing apart from the narrator. For her, it seems a natural step from Southern down-home dialect (at least as her writer's ear perceived it) to the experiments with non-syntactical language that put her in the forefront of experimental poetry. Not only do her poems explore uncharted ground in both subject and form, each new volume seems to take new risks. If this book has any pitfalls, it's that there's not enough space to include more poems from each volume. Highly recommended.
— Library Journal