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                   May 2021

Sally Nacker’s Kindness in Winter is a bright blossom of a book, generously populated with birds, gardens, sunlight, and the occasional visiting doe. It comes as a welcome gift for readers seeking respite from the world’s prevailing despair, reminding us to “quietly observe the snow / dissolve into a field of flowers.” These are poems that are beautifully crafted (many of them gracefully rhymed and metered), and often reminiscent of Dickinson, Robert Francis, or Mary Oliver in their precise observations of the natural world.

—Marilyn L. Taylor, Poet Laureate of Wisconsin

(2009-2010), author of Going Wrong and Step on a Crack

Because you studied / the error of a speck of white / cloud,” begins the speaker in a particularly evocative poem by Sally Nacker, what was otherwise perfect becomes, somehow, imperfectly beautiful, and thus, in this poem, “bluer.” It’s to the beautiful imperfection that Nacker has turned her acute poet’s eye in her new collection Kindness in Winter—so that at some point the inward and the outward meet one another in common tremble. Situated in the natural world, these poems take a kind of interior flight, each marking its own sure course.

      —Carol Ann Davis, poet and essayist, author of Atlas Hour and The Nail in the Tree

In looking into the minutiae of the natural world—the eyes of a wren, footprints of a bird in snow, morning light on magnolia petals—Kindness in Winter conveys their hugeness with understated wonder and a softly resonating music.

      —Henry Lyman, author of The Land Has Its Say

As in her previous two collections—Vireo and Night Snow—Sally’s poems continue to hold a deep clarity and profound stillness within them. Her crystalline evocations of winter make me feel a reverence for a season I have often dreaded. I return to Sally’s work when I want to abide more fully in the peace and beauty of the world. Like the wild phlox in her poem of that name, Sally’s poems “. . . preach a goodness and a fragrant / prayer. They ignite the air, and astonish.”

      —Andrea Potos, author of Mothershell and Marrow of Summer

                                                                                            Read the Review in Quill and Parchment:


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