Title: Atlas
Author: Katrina Vandenberg
Pub Date: 2004
Pages: 78
Genre: Poetry

It is no shocking news that I am not a big fan of poetry but this is my year where I am making an effort to step away from my inner child groans and take the plunge.

So, after much hype about Atlas, I picked it up months ago and have been reading it ever since. I'll take a bulleted format for this because my thoughts aren't quite coherent to put together a full-fledged review. Me thinks that reviewing poetry is quite different than reviewing the book!

  • It took me three months to read Atlas, which is one of the things that put me off about poetry. It seems innately WRONG to sit down and digest a whole book of poems. Like I'm not letting it simmer. You know, sorta like sauce. Sure you could nuke your spaghetti sauce and then pour it over noodles, but it's much better if you let it simmer allowing the herbs to fully mix with the sauciness.

  • I'm turned off with taking so long to read the poems because I always seem to forget I'm reading them!
  • I really liked the poems where Vandenberg was straightforward. Alternatively, I totally disliked the poems where she made allusions to things past.

  • Vandenberg has this way of going full circle in her poems which I ABSOLUTELY LOVED!

  • Can I stress that my ignorant self had to look up historical references and it totally bogged down the flow for me?!?

  • I also thought she wrote very earthy. Does that make sense? The cycler, womanly, earthy tone was very appealing.

  • It was cool that her topics were all over the place. They covered life, death, love, family, history, etc.

  • What I do like about poetry is the "AHA" moment that you get after reading a poem a couple of times over.
So, to end this list, I thought I'd share a poem that I loved.

Remembering Him Dying

It was like his teaching her to ride a bicycle
in the driveway that fall, him calling out
I've got you, which meant he planned to let go
any moment. He made her try again,
again; she crashed the yellow Schwinn
into the elm, cried and called him names.

If she could have looked back and kept her balance
the last time he shoved her out of his hands,
she would have seen him griefstruck, still, shinking
as she wobbled from his shadow, into the sun-dappled road.


  1. My inner child won't listen to yours and still refuses to read poetry! It sounded like hard work and I just haven't the patience.

  2. I have the same issues with poetry, but I'm trying this year. I'm goign to try to read a collection in April, just a couple poems a day.

  3. *sniff* I got teary-eyed reading that poem again. Yes, "earthly" males perfect sense. I was reading this book for...all of last year, really, and I'm not sure I'm done with it yet. I loved it, and I'm glad you enjoyed at least some of it.

  4. I don't get poetry either, but wanted to try something for my "take a chance" challenge. So maybe I will read this for an genre I never read! I do like the one you posted!


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