Sister by Nickole Brown

Issue #103
Fall 2007

Sister, poems by Nickole Brown (Red Hen): Using umbilicus as guide rail, the speaker of this unflinching and brilliant first book undertakes a hair-lifting expedition back to her childhood, returning to a younger sister both long neglected and longed for. Proving that narrative and lyric are never mutually exclusive, Brown pulls the reader down the channel of her past, which gurgles with the "sound of diesel," to reveal a pedophile—"a man who simply // cannot stop." These poems, always stunning in their clairvoyance, advise us to take such experience and "simply / bury it, but bury it / alive." —Cate Marvin