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After Ward, Poems by Wendell Hawken

The powerful poems of Wendell Hawken's After Ward bring the reader into a world where each day, each movement forward, is a journey.

Sample Poems by Wendell Hawken

"The nuanced poems of Wendell Hawken's eloquent collection, After Ward, are wrought of accident and aftermath. Emerging from the loss and bewilderment of an adult son's sudden paralysis, the speaker feels through moments of 'dark disturbance' and hope to sketch a tale of metamorphosis whose untold ending holds 'no guarantees.' Infused with dreams, nursery rhymes, riddles, and the life and death lessons of the natural world, the language and its music give shape to the devastation and astonishment of profound trauma and discovery."--J. C. Todd, author of Beyond Repair

"After Ward, the aftermath of an accident which left her son a quadriplegic, traverses hope and despair "on two wings, one full of life, the other empty.' In realms of hospitals and the natural world, under a Wolf Moon, amid the 'brevity of bluebells,' Wendell Hawken takes us on a flight through powerful crosscurrents of pain and exaltation. This book is honest, intensely moving, and helpful in my own experience of the inexorable."--Patricia Corbus, winner of the 2015 Off the Grid Poetry Award

"Wendell Hawken knows that no worthwhile word means just one thing. Think gravity, a recurring word in this harrowing and beautiful collection. Think merciless. Think mindful andnotwithstanding and broken and brace and otherwise. The poems in After Ward turn such words over and over in the light of catastrophe to discover their layered meanings. The fact at the book's core is a traumatic spinal injury. What matters now is not how it happened but its everlasting dailiness for a mother and her broken first-born' son, his body nearly useless and his mind intact. Readers familiar with Hawken's work will recognize the wry humor and 'play it by ear' music of her language as she walks the fine lines between knowing and not knowing, fact and dream, hope and despair, if and when. Her portrayal of trauma care is exact, spare and ruthless. The hospital is a 'cool pale place' where everything's on wheels and every door is wheelchair-wide, and ''walk is not a word to use, not when anyone might hear.' If there is beauty here -- and there is -- it's in Hawken's ability to summon words for this, for us to hear."--Don Colburn, author of Mortality, With Pronoun Shifts

"As a healthcare provider, I have witnessed firsthand the emotional challenges that accompany a major injury or illness. In this collection of poems, Wendy shares the experiences a mother faces as she adapts to a major injury to her child. In her honest, moving, and poignant writing, Wendy captures the challenges, disappointments and joys of a life-changing injury has on both the patient and their family." --Helen Parker, PT, DPT, NCS, Clinical Director, Ability Fitness Center

ISBN: 978-1625494115, 94 pages, $18.00

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