These complex and often brilliant short stories by the poet can stand up to the best that appear today. The events which are ordinary enough -- those which divide or unite couples -- are described with precision and subtlety and generate a considerable tension. Sometimes the characters appear nameless and are referred to only by function (e.g., the Farm Woman); they are defined quite accurately, economically and socially by their possessions or money or life-style so that the author's interest in them is clearly sociological. The philosophy is rather grim -- one of unconscious tedium and semi-conscious exploitation, but on occasion there is a coming together when people accept other people on authentic terms. Carol Berge addresses herself directly to the reader (""This is how it looks"") with a real concern for honest transmission which makes the tricks of the avant-garde seem like the play of babes.