New York Times-bestselling author and award-winning poet of Heartwood
New York Times-bestselling author Mary Logue has published mystery novels, poetry, non-fiction books, and many books for children. Her awards include a Minnesota Book Award, a Wisconsin Outstanding Achievement award and an Edgar nomination. Her poetry book, Meticulous Attachment, received a Midwest Booksellers honor award. Her picture book, Sleep Like a Tiger, won a Charlotte Zolotow honor, a Caldecott honor, and Best Picture Book award in Japan. Mary has also worked as an editor at Simon and Schuster, Graywolf Press and The Creative Company. She has taught in the writing programs at the University of Minnesota and Hamline University and written for the New York Times, the Star Tribune, and the Village Voice. She lives with writer Pete Hautman in Golden Valley, Minnesota, and Stockholm, Wisconsin.
In Heart Wood poet Mary Logue gives the reader a close examination of the wonderful ordinariness of life in clear and simple language. She asks one to “stand on the earth” and listen, to witness the miracle of a lamb being born, and shows the magic of floating on water. In these poems, she encourages us to live in the heart of this world, realistically to “know how bad it can be and how good.” Having homes on both sides of the Mississippi river in Minnesota and Wisconsin, Logue is deeply aware of the natural environment. The landscape of this collection is filled with trees, snow, rivers, flowers, and “wars and weddings.” We are presented with the many ways people move through the world as we watch people quilt, stare at a lunar eclipse, or doze with a small dog on their lap. With a warm fire burning while drinking verbena tea the books ends, giving us a deep awareness of all the has happened, at the close of another day. She reminds us it is our duty to “wring every drop of joy” out of this life we have been given, whatever form it takes.
For decades, I’ve read in both Mary Logue’s poems and prose, a clear voice carefully advising us how to be present, not just to the moment but to the world. Each poem in Heart Wood appears suddenly out of stillness like a leaf landing on the grass, an instant of precision so deeply observed, we are awakened to the mystery of everyday life. She brings us into a kind and open listening. At each poem’s close, there is an incisive circling back home to the heart of the matter. I didn’t want the book to end.
–Kate Green, author of Shattered Moon, Black Dreams, and If the World is Running Out
Each of Logue’s elegantly wrought poems is a reminder that in our “ordinary” lives, whether walking, flying or simply sitting in silence, we carry tragedy AND glory. And that we can choose which we will inhabit.
–Nan St. Clair, author of A Distant Mirror
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