A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm
by Melanie Green
The poems in A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm are an invitation to slow down, to rest deep into quiet and the contemplative. Melanie Green’s poetry explores the connection with the numinous—as well as speaking to the difficulty of living with a chronic illness.
About the Author
Melanie Green grew up in the Pacific Northwest enjoying the outdoors and athletics, worked as a ski instructor, day care supervisor, and motorcycle sales person before contracting a chronic illness which now limits her physical activities. Her lifelong love for reading and writing persists, as well as an avid interest in wisdom, beauty, and that which connects us all. She is the author of two earlier poetry collections: Continuing Bridge and Determining Sky. She resides in Portland, Oregon.
In A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm, Melanie Green establishes herself as an astute observer and reverent appreciator of worlds within and without. With the ease/ of non-striving (“Revelatory”), she explores the momentarily unshackled/ now (“An Unconfined Astronomy”) of birds, flowers, trees, lakes, galaxies, and a human body that can overdo into illness/ and fatigue (“Blessing for Self-Kindness”).
Haiku-like in their intensity of language, Zen-like in their meditative quality, these lyrical poems invite us to pause, catch our breaths, and marvel at a poet who invites us to Feel/ the psalm/ of lingering/ calm/ in afternoon’s/ echo of light (“The Luster of Silence”).
—Carolyn Martin, author of The Way a Woman Knows
and A Penchant for Masquerades
A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm is an outstanding collection of quiet, graceful, contemplative poems. In precise yet highly-imaginative language, Melanie Green discovers Zen balance in the world around her, and hard-earned solace in her own meditative thoughts. After admitting, in “Allegiance,” that I have/ lost/ my way, she nonetheless perseveres, summoning the silver sound of rain and a psalm/ of lingering/ calm/ in afternoon’s/ echo of light. This is a wise, generous, expertly crafted volume of poems that reminds us how even in the deep/ arabesque/ of night, in the bearable/ dark, we might yet walk/ out of the house of worry into a place where solitude is cherished, and heaven is within.
—Tim Applegate, author of Blueprints
and At the End of Day