by Linda Parsons Marion


BOUND   by Linda Parsons Marion

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In Bound, Linda Parsons Marion cuts away the translucent film of distance and lets the rich “furrows and stitches” of memory shine clear and sharp, seaming one generation to the next. These patterns of light and work and family—“heat and heft” of any life—remind us of the simple fabric from which we shape our own joys. Bound is a lovely, lovely book.  
— Darnell Arnoult  
Bound, yes. Bound to the human condition, bound to tribulation and sorrow, but bound for glory at last. Reading Linda Parsons Marion’s powerful collection was for me like making my way through a necessary, dark and thorny thicket to come into a great wide garden, plenteous as far as the eye could see—farther, past “the boundless untasted fruit / we cannot yet bear to count.” This book is brimful and overflowing. Come hungry and leave sated.
— Fred Chappell
Dense with objects and sensory images, Linda Parsons Marion’s Bound chronicles the empty spaces and missed connections of five generations of a Tennessee family. In compressed narratives of loss and perseverance the poet recovers the feel of homes and lives lived in the mid-south across the better part of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first. Rich as the book’s poems, its title, “bound,” signifies not only the loss and refusal bound up in the poet’s first birth experience, but also the ways she is bound to the generations before and after her, though parent and child were bound on journeys away from each other and always bound to fall short.  In this volume, Linda Parsons Marion has pulled off a family epic in verse, redeeming the past and blessing the future with her clear eye and quiet voice.
— Leatha Kendrick

        From the Book ---


High on her luscious thigh, we point 
to the map of our corner of the universe. 
Faint and violet, a nebula yet unprobed 
by the world’s curiosities, we are drawn 
to its small burst, star rising in the east.
We’d lasso it to earth if we could, fall 
prostrate in awe, shouting glory, revolve 
elliptical around the blue-hot core, let brilliance
shoot from our fingertips. Now she crawls 
out of reach, xylophone and spinning top 
her planets to conquer with flags of grasp 
and drool. When her legs lengthen, taper 
to womanhood, will this constellation fade, 
our worship unmarked, will our wanting hearts 
look up and remember this brief heaven?