Sally Rosen Kindred
Sally Rosen Kindred is the author of two previous collections, Book of Asters and No Eden, and three chapbooks. She has received two awards for poetry from the Maryland State Arts Council, and her poems have appeared in numerous journals, including The Gettysburg Review, Shenandoah, and Kenyon Review Online. She teaches creative writing for Johns Hopkins CTY and for The Poetry Barn.
Photo Courtesy of Berni Carrieri, Photographer
Where the Wolf
About the Book
Sally Rosen Kindred’s third book, Where the Wolf, is a wood where a girl-turned-woman, a daughter-turned-mother, goes walking, searching for the warm fur, the hackles and hurts—past and future—inside her. These poems explore how stories—fairy tales, family memories, myths, and dreams—tell us, and let us tell each other, who we are, and what’s wild and sacred in our connections. From “the beast your mother made/ who scans hood and bed,” to the ghost-guard summoned by a child on the night her family fractures, to the teenage son who transforms into “beauty, his dread-body,” the beings in these poems are themselves stories, spells: alchemized through language, always becoming, bearing hope and loss. They fragment in anxiety, and form into new wilderness. They open themselves to reconstruction, redemption. Through it all, “Wolf is the ghost of a hurt remembering itself. Is She. You can hear Her between trees.” These poems are a calling out—through meadows, emptied houses, dark skies—to wolf and self, parent and child, girl and woman, love and grief.
“Both elegy and origin story, Where the Wolf chronicles the darkness that makes and breaks and saves us. Sally Rosen Kindred’s poems, thorned and gorgeous, spin a world of moss and memory, of teeth and grief and asphodel. They examine what it is to have, to lose, to be a mother, and remind us that, even in the deepest woods, “mercy is the motor, spinning this story.” What an astounding book this is.”
—Catherine Pierce, author of Danger Days
“In her magnificent third collection, Where the Wolf, Sally Rosen Kindred pursues, through the twin forests of memory and wisdom, the elusive mystery and myth of family. She casts an especially penetrating gaze at parenthood, looking both ahead and behind, above and below. The forests are dark and haunted by ghosts of the past, the present, and yes, the future, but with clear vision, uncommon courage, and a stunningly empathetic imagination, Kindred leads us inexorably toward the light. So grab this book, reader, and head for the winter trees. You can trust your guide.”
—Dan Albergotti, author of Millennial Teeth
“In Where the Wolf, Sally Rosen Kindred makes and remakes the world with language that’s both savage and tender, a world in which words and their mysteries give us passageways to a second world: that of myth and memory, unseen but not separate from our own. Always there is the specter of grief haunting the edge of the scene. Always the inevitable losses—past selves, the children who are nearly grown now, a mother adrift in dementia. ‘I know now I was something held,’ writes Kindred, and we feel both the care and the hindrance of that embrace in a woman’s life as she navigates middle age. Perhaps most of all, Where the Wolf is a searing elegy for daughterhood, and although we know how this ends every time, still some things hold true despite the losses: ‘I wake hard, a daughter. I break back into my skin.’”
—Molly Spencer, author of Hinge