Wishing for Snow: A Memoir

Wishing for Snow: A Memoir

by Minrose Gwin
     
 

In this brave and beautifully composed tribute to her mother, Minrose Gwin accomplishes something rare in the craft of the memoir: not merely a record of a devastating mother-daughter relationship but a redemptive act of artistic witness as well. In telling the story of her mentally ill poet mother, Erin Taylor Clayton Pitner, Gwin looks backward and forward at a… See more details below

Overview

In this brave and beautifully composed tribute to her mother, Minrose Gwin accomplishes something rare in the craft of the memoir: not merely a record of a devastating mother-daughter relationship but a redemptive act of artistic witness as well. In telling the story of her mentally ill poet mother, Erin Taylor Clayton Pitner, Gwin looks backward and forward at a southern family, linking personal and cultural malaise while also attempting to envision the person her mother longed to be, the woman Gwin never knew.

Erin Taylor wasn't always unsane. Her childhood diary from 1930 reveals a cheerful, observant Mississippi girl who steadfastly wished for snow. From a dreamy college student to a young divorced mother who then remarried, grew middle aged, and began to write and publish poetry, Erin Taylor spiraled deeper and deeper into the psychosis that eventually defined her existence until her death from ovarian cancer. Gwin searches for her mother amid the poetry, letters, recipes, traffic tickets, newspaper clippings, medical reports, and quixotic lists left behind. She even conjures a ghostly Erin in the office who tells her own version of Gwin's memories.

With humor, intrigue, and sadness, Gwin's compelling memoir reflects the brilliance and despair of her mother's life. Haunting every page of Wishing for Snow is the sense that Erin Taylor is transcending the tragic limitations of mental and physical disease through her daughter's quest to truly know her. Gwin's combination of candor and grace takes wing toward a reconciliation both impossible and utterly necessary.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807129289
Publisher:
Louisiana State University Press
Publication date:
03/28/2004
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
232
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 8.24(h) x 0.98(d)

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