Newfoundland-born author Difalco adds to her growing catalog of inspirational verse with a masterful collection of poems.
The author’s latest poetry collection—the first published for an American audience—is a veritable font of wisdom about such profound issues as life, death, family and faith. Like many other talented poets, Difalco uses her own experiences, her memories, and stories told to her as inspiration for verse. In one particularly poignant piece, she reminisces about her grandparents who were lighthouse keepers: “The winds of time now gently flow / The lamps are trimmed and fit / From sunset rays till early dawn / All through the night you sit.” She bases many of her precisely metered verses on real events, as in the stirring “Don’t Leave Me,” about a lone survivor of a plane crash awaiting help in the cold ocean: “I must not drift back into night.” In “Only a Girl,” based on a story told to the poet, an old man buries his wife but sees her only as she was when she was young. Although a few verses reflect larger socioeconomic issues such as homelessness or environmental decay, the main themes are nostalgia and finding strength in religious faith. The collection could have drifted dangerously toward sentimentality, but the author’s deft touch maintains a wise voice throughout, keeping the verses strong and clear rather than melodramatic—a difficult high-wire act for any writer. Despite her tendencies toward Christian themes, nonbelievers may find solace and joy in her descriptions of the power of the natural world and of the comfort of loving family members past and present. This volume might make an excellent gift for friends in need of a touchstone of inspiration.
A generous, stirring collection honoring loving relationships, hope in hard times and religious devotion.