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Open Reading Selection New Release To Leave for Our Own Country

To Leave for Our Own Country

by John Linstrom

Though what we commonly consider sacred in religious terms is referenced in this moving and love-filled collection, that tradition is eclipsed by a higher, wider, and more ethereal reach. The poems here provide a record of the poet’s always sudden and brief yet bright encounters with that unknown mystical realm—the texture of water as it falls against the shore, the sound of a snapped tree branch, the recollection of a childhood walk to school and the influence of weather on the meaning of such a walk. All common enough, one may say, but the richness of observed detail in these crisp poems is coupled with formal skill, wisely measured ambiguity, some wry off-hand humor, and plenty of wit. For my reading, that adds up to a fine, uncommonly absorbing book, one that tilts the somber toward affection and the grave toward delight.

—Maurice Manning


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