Pat Lowery Collins
Author, Poet, Painter
THE QUIET WOMAN WAKES UP SHOUTING
Folly Cove Books
Chapbook Series, 1998,
A chapbook in the Folly Cove Books series which features poets living and writing on Cape Ann, MA. A few poems are reproduced here.
"A painter turns her powers of observation and interpretation to the world of poetry. When a painter/illustrator turns her well-honed powers of observation and interpretation to the world of poetry, the optimal result is an aesthetic wedding of the visual and the verbal. Such is the case with Gloucester artist, Pat Lowery Collins, also the author of many acclaimed children's books, most notably 'I Am An Artist', a two time Reading Rainbow selection.
In her just-published collection, 'The Quiet Woman Wakes Up Shouting', the eighth offering in publisher Ray Bentley's Folly Cove chapbook series, Lowery Collins proves herself a contemplative creature with an eye, ear, nose, taste and touch for nature's secrets.
In '7:00 P.M.,' the opening poem, Lowery Collins depicts the moment of transforming early evening half-light. In clean strokes, she captures the evanescence of the fading sunlight that rinces 'houses, beaches and boats/with fool's gold.' Shells seem to be made of glass, sand castles turn to bronze, and a general 'glistening spell' is perceived by those lingering, receptive souls who are resourceful enough to bear witness with 'the marrow of bone,/the window of eye,/an expandable heart.'
Indeed, the 25 poems in this painterly collection combine elemental evocation with prayer-like appreciation. In 'The Thunder Moon', the orb of the stormy, evening sky throbs with rich, textured tones: 'The moon, spidered with fine red roads,/looked like vermeil,/or the pulse of summer, or/like the end of God's thumb.'
Even in perceiving a grown daughter's interaction with her young son, Lowery Collins utilizes the sights, smells, sounds and sensations of the sea and seasons. As her grandson rushes into his mother's arms, the poet frames the scene:'From across the room/I'm holding/my own tall child/in my eyes. Her hair/smells of salt./There's wind and summer in her skin.'
On a less joyous note, 'Still Born' records the swelling, swimming and spilling of incipient life. In a paradox that re-echoes the collection's title of a quiet woman shouting, the poem concludes, 'The shout/Of a dead child carries.'
Thus, the poems are deep-seated, well-measured epiphanies, organic manifestations of fragility and strength that gather grace as they swim, like fishes in the sea, from the poet's palette - her mind, her soul, her lips." - Lyn LeGendre, "
–Northshore Supplement", Essex County Newspapers, 5/14/98