Sunday, January 25, 2009

Review of
Rose Marie Raccioppi’s
The Wind and the Willow

“Are these assumptions of reality/The shackles that need to be broken[?]”queries Rose Marie Raccioppi in “Possibility,” from The Wind and the Willow, her first collection of verse. The line is emblematic of her core pursuit to pierce beyond the illusory veils of the material world while paradoxically being dependent upon reality for drawing imagery to provide intimations of the “Beyond.”

A non-denominational devotional poet with fervent pantheistic longings, Raccioppi’s metaphors and unpretentious affirmations appeal directly to the heart. In this volume she creates a metaphysical poetry and is content to take her simple Shelleyan imagery wherever she finds it within nature’s bounty.

The Wind and the Willow consists mostly of brief meditations and what Raccioppi calls “mindscapes” which constantly seek calming epiphanies of self-recognition in the fleeting moments, even in the midst of turbulent and painful experience. At her best, in works such as “This Night Knows No Sleep,” “This a Winter’s Night,” “Away You Fly,” “Descent No More,” “But Can I Share,” “The Wind and the Willow,” “Swaddling Divine,” and “Now and Ever Blessed,” Raccioppi attains perceptual clarity and an incantatory music that might remind readers, by turns, of Henry Vaughan’s devotional lyrics, Walt Whitman’s celebrations of the unbridled Self, the near-improvisatory freshness of D.H. Lawrence’s “Pansies,” and William Blake’s “Songs of Innocence.” This is poetry that is designed to reach a broad audience.

John Ballard

Available at Barnes and Noble and online booksellers nationally and internationally.
Pub. Date: June 2008
ISBN-13: 9781604744545


Cacologripher said...

What a mesmerizing review. I see you are an academic so I will say this: You have a way with words unlike any professor I've had in my sordid experiece of higher education. I bet you are a great teacher.

Rose Marie Raccioppi said...

Thank you - Words, sounds, music, color, structure, line, form - I am joined in your play. I too enjoyed visiting your blog and was particularly touched by the beauty of your gift to your grandfather. Do visit http://www.apogeelearning - you will see how much of an adventure teaching is for me.