The central theme of this outstanding collection lies in the opening line of the first poem: ``Light is what's important.'' Light, darkness, and color permeate these poems, reflecting Hokanson's keen powers of observation, most notably of the islands, mountains, and tidal waters of coastal northern Washington. The poet's visual field blends with subtly charged emotions, rendering, finally, a natural world glorious in its beauty yet overwhelmingly indifferent to the vagaries of human existence. A haiku-like quality imbues many poems: ``Mirror of cloud, last light/ off the mountains taking/ the colorless water.'' Hokanson displays a consummate skill at re-conjuring past human events, all the while appreciating this human existence that Robinson Jeffers once called ``the divine beauty of the universe.''-- John Creech, Western Carolina Univ., Cullowhee, N.C.