sally nacker 

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 If Emily Dickinson were to work in a flower shop,

you would have Sally Nacker. Her poems

are often about nature, small moments; her talent is

the quiet observation: “Gift me hope when grief is long; /

grant me a little floating song” (“Prayer During Rain”). 

Subtly, Nacker readjusts our

expectations with her more muted approach:

“There will be no table in

heaven, / I would think” (“During Stillness”).  Although she has been

through sorrow, she is content with life on earth.  After all, “A poem’s in

a blade of grass” (“A Poem’s in a Blade of Grass”).  Like W. S. Merwin

(whose epigraph frames the book, and whose

preoccupations mirror Nacker’s), Emily Dickinson, and Walt Whitman,

Nacker indicates that “nature’s Mass . . .

awoke me to a holiness” (“A Poem’s in a Blade of Grass”).  Nacker’s gift,

along with her metrical skill, is that she

brings the reader along with her


      — Kim Bridgford, editor of Mezzo Cammin, and author of Doll



In these quiet songlike poems there are moments, miracles,

when language seems almost to become what it describes.


 —Henry Lyman, author of The Land Has Its Say



The stillness in Sally Nacker's poems is infused with a wonderful vitality.

I found myself lingering over each poem

and the quiet immensity the poem brought forth. There is real feeling here,

“a little floating song,” that invigorates and



— BaronWormser, author of Tom o' Vietnam



About the artist: 

Cover pastel and inside photolithograph

by Mary Lou Bierman,

copyright 2017