Book Reviews

Diary of a Mad Poet

Jonah Raskin’s review of Diary of a Mad Poet:

Robin Gabbert’s new book of poems, Diary of a Mad Poet—her first published book—comes out of pain and loss, fire and cancer, but they are also poems of healing and joy, family ties and friendships.

Some take place in the far away past, others in the near present. Some experiment with form and the arrangement of words on the page.

In one poem the author asks “Has God deserted you? Was he ever there to?”

Altogether, Gabbert’s individual poems add up to a portrait of a life lived fully. They offer hope to readers like the author herself who have come through troubles and who delight in the powers of memory and the rigors of the English language.

Jonah Raskin is the author of seven poetry chapbooks, a performance poet, and the author of American Scream: Allen Ginsberg’s ‘Howl’ and the Making of the Beat Generation.

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