|Prose Pieces From A Poets Journal
of Love, Loss, and Transcendence
In 1985 Jeanne Lohmann lost her husband, Hank, to brain cancer. The journals she kept during and after that time formed the heart of her book, Gathering a Life. Published in 1989, this collection of short prose pieces was critically acclaimed for the sensitivity of the writing and for the books generosity and compassion.
Since then Lohmann has published other books, all poetry. With Dancing in the Kitchen, she returns to prose, again mining the journal that sustained her through her husbands illness and death, and as she moves on in her life.
Jeanne Lohmann writes plainly and beautifully about transition and discoveries, saying what she continues to learn of love and loss, life in and beyond widowhood. Her new book is full of irony, humor, anger, sorrow, and the fulfillment of letting go. Along the way we find things that matter: roses, camellias, stars and beaches, the trees, and most of all, family and friends. Without denying sorrow, the book is a dance of celebration, whether in the kitchen, in nature, or during travels abroad.
Describing the alchemy of turning life into art, Lohmann says, I believe with a nudge, an insight, and then through the discipline of writing and revisionif were luckythe work connects and speaks for us, and to others.
Dancing in the Kitchen invites readers to pay attention to their own lives. The tenderness and courtesy shining through these brief stories can help us do that.
Jeanne Lohmann, whose poetry and prose have appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies, is a graduate of the creative writing program at San Francisco State University. She lives and writes in Olympia, Washington.
||Dancing in the Kitchen
A Prose Collection
96 pages, paperback, $12.00
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