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Reading Together Since 1999
Doe, a poetry collection
Posted by Susan Baller-Shepard on: 2019-02-03 @ 09:30 am

Doe will be loose in the world at the end of March 2019, you can preorder now at Finishing Line Press. 


To read the poems in this fine first collection is to stroll through the lives of many females – human and animal alike — with a most companionable guide. Baller-Shepard is a remarkable new poetic voice equally at ease with observing farm women at work, discussing Einstein’s Grand Unified Theory, or contemplating the life span of a mayfly. Through Baller-Shepard’s careful excavation of the embers of memory – a blue popsicle, a clutch of irises, a high-backed wooden bench —  you will find yourself mining the memories of the narrative of your own life. This is this poet’s gift to her readers.

–Judith Valente, author of the poetry collections Discovering Moons and Inventing An Alphabet, and co-editor of “Twenty Poems to Nourish Your Soul.”


“From the title, Doe, by Sue Baller-Shepard, anticipates a thicket of feminine myth and symbol: motherhood, martyrdom, victimhood; defenselessness, passivity; naked beauty hunted, stalked, violated, enshrined perhaps but never trophied, not like their antlered fathers and sons.  The trick and magic of and through these poems is the metamorphosis of the metaphor, suggested, argued, developed through a sleight of forms, often repeating forms that advance argument passively through repetition, tricksterish word play, re-castings of memory and narrative. Reading them becomes a kind of active listening, hearing a kind of speaking; and backtracking, sliding off, getting lost, staying still, retracing steps—all a kind of advance.  All those female survival skills of defense—the withdraw, hide, step out of the way, disappear tactics—unfold an offense, and change the world. Hear, hear, hear! And rejoice!”

Lucia Cordell Getsi, PhD, Former Spoon River Poetry Review Editor, Author of Intensive Care