13 - Breath in Every Room by Tami Haaland Sept 9, 2008 6:41:50 GMT 2
Post by shayepoet on Sept 9, 2008 6:41:50 GMT 2
Breath in Every Room
Winner of the Nicholas Roerich First Book Award, 2001.
“At the intersection of dailiness and dream, like those paintings where faces are hidden in what seems at first an ordinary landscape, the poems of Tami Haaland, in settings solidly real, slowly disclose an uncanny, totemic realm—Norse and Northwestern, and uniquely her own.”
Found what I think are the breast feathers
of a flicker lying in the melting snow
in front of the house. Found a crow feather
in Bozeman one spring and have kept it
in a vase on top of the dresser. Yarrow grows
where my son planted a root last summer,
and hyssop seeds have sprouted
with the wildflowers. Found spearmint
growing under the outside faucet
and tiny blue snails in the fallen apples
and black and white hornets stumbling drunk
around the rotting apples in August. The columbine
had eight inches of new growth in January,
and two summers ago found a red-shafted flicker
lying in the alley behind my house
with grass in its throat and wasps
crawling in and out of its mouth.
Its wing feathers were dazzling
and I took them, buried its body
in tall weeds, saved the feathers
in checkbook boxes in the dresser
beside a Norwegian pewter cake server,
a twenty dollar bill, some old ribbons
and a flat rock from the Marias.
His mate remained in the neighborhood until fall,
and this February a pair or flickers returned
to eat last year's sunflower seeds
at the side of the garage.
One spring, hundreds of crows filled a single tree,
their black wings shifting against dense bodies
and air, their voices calling across leaves
then reeling into space.
Saw flickers in the park last spring,
a male calling with such racket
my son covered his ears, and
from across the park, through twigs
and leaves pushing out from resinous shells,
a female approached, blended into bark
and clouds, and for an instant, opened to the sound.
Praise and reviews for Breath in Every Room:
"Tami Haaland's poems touch the interior of the world...Like a whale's song, they are recursive - eddying, building."
"In her impressive debut,...the seeds of [Haaland's] creative strength germinate in crystals of mythology and the telling of dreams."
--Joel Weishaus, Philadelphia Inquirer
"She seems blessed with a wonderfully nimble and fearless imagination."
About the author:
Tami Haaland’s collection of poetry, Breath in Every Room, won the Nicholas Roerich First Book Award. Her work has appeared in High Desert Journal, Calyx, 5AM and other literary magazines, as well as in several anthologies, including Ring of Fire: Writers of the Yellowstone Region, Montana Women Writers: A Geography of the Heart, and Letters to the World. She is an associate professor of English and Director of the Honors Program at Montana State University Billings.
MSUB Home page: Assistant Professor of English
Poets & Writers: Tami Haaland
Interview: Conversations on Language
Webcast: Library of Congress,
National Book Festival, 2003
National Book Festival, 2003
ISBN: 1-58654-016-5, 82 pages, $13.95
Story Line Press, 2001
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