"Wallaces new collection is a stark book: sincere in its continual engagement with doubt, silence, absence, and loneliness. The author concedes in her epigraph that she struggles to reconcile faith and her "Western mind"; her Triton, rather like Wordsworths, is to "deliver us from our unbelief." Her God, a post-Kierkegaardian challenge, stimulates both a poetry and a faith in her that is "a dense hollowness," the only respites seeming to come from friendship, love, and natural scenes, vividly and respectfully glimpsed. VERDICT Paraclete has done itself proud with their two finest poets to date, the direct and heartbreaking Wallace and the acerbic, accomplished ­Runyan." Library Journal
"In this collection of deeply intimate conversations, addresses, and meditations Jennifer Wallace follows the most fearsome states of being into realms of tender beauty. In her sight, nothing is to be turned away fromnot the granite of human loneliness, the unexpectedly bright hues of loss, the vitality of grief, or the sharp challenges born of authentic spiritual striving. Wallaces eye and heart roam freely among the mysteries (without, as Keats wrote, any irritable reaching after fact or reason) and in roaming, find that abundant field where we might touch again those whose light made us more visible."Lia Purpura, author of It Shouldnt Have Been Beautiful
"Jennifer Wallace writes, I have a softness in me that I want / to be closer to. These poems, one after the next, labor toward something like that softness--laboring which is not only elegant, but clumsy and craving and scared and utterly human. Which makes this book a good guide, a good companion, toward our own softness. To which I, too, more than just about anything, want to be closer." Ross Gay, author of Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude
"In poem after poem, Jennifer Wallace strives to capture the experience of being alive in the context of particular experiences in which she both memorializes and praises at the same time. Admirably comfortable with deceptively quotidian subject matter, no matter how small or seemingly negligible, Wallace conjures shining details that convey the deeply evocative pathos of ordinary things through the lens of memory and perspicacity. Indeed, her poems appear to come to herin John Keats phraseas naturally as leaves to a tree. In her poem Miracle, Wallace writes her own memorable ars poetica with admirable balance between telling and showing: Miracle means also:/ not to shy away from, but to become/ awesome, like light through the branches/ ushering into existence/ each tip of insignificant grass. These are refreshingly mature lyrical poems reminding us of who we are anew in our most familiar settings." Chard deNiord, Vermont Poet Laureate
"The poet walks me from one pause to another and yet another. In the pauses, picture-phrases and lean, clear emotions lift me and set me down, sing to me and fall silent. What a lovely walk. And how lightly does the wisdom rest on me and wait for my recognition. Wallace helps us identify what the soul has already learned." Vinita Hampton Wright, author of The St. Teresa of Avila Prayer Book.
"Jennifer Wallaces poems, clear and measured in their language, while incandescent in their vision, show what happens when the ordinary is ennobled: we are souls, rather than mere selves, and the world we inhabit, while prey to tragedy and indifference at every turn, is still a world fit for wonder and grace. This is a marvelous work that stands with Cairns and Oliver, Wimans and Glück, reclaiming the sacred in the steady rumor of its eclipse." David Rigsbee, author of Not Alone in My Dancing: Essays and Reviews
"These lines are accessible, but not in a way where accessible is code for: theres not much going on here. It means rather the words are put together in a way that makes you want to get to the end of the poem and see just what this author is up to. In short, they are compelling." Br. Joe Hoover, SJ, poetry editor at America Magazine.