Jan Minich’s new collection begins in “Reflection Canyon,” and in classic poet fashion his words do double duty, describing the physical reflection on the water where he is “anchored in a graveyard of trees, / oddly shaped skeletons” before going on to write of reflections of another kind, of memory and history and more psychic skeletons. Similarly the title poem reveals that Grace Harbor is both a real place and a state of mind, where “a tree that fell parallel to shore” is “like an old man / moving back and forth / between going on and getting ready to turn back.” Minich writes from the perspective of that pivot point, even when he doubts the efficacy of language: “I don’t wonder at my loss for words. / I’ve used too many for any lake / or river to care.” But for his readers who do care, his words are themselves a state of grace: “We’ll all hold onto one another / but sometimes we’ll let go / to be able to swim to shore.” Most of his poems take place in and on the water, with the pace and flow of water, adrift in space and time for “There’s no certain point in water.” And in the absence of certainty, Minich finds grace, as in his closing image “Turning a heavy coat inside out / I watch a man beside me, / a father or son with that same / expression on his face” – all of us, across the years, “Coming Home.” Please join us in welcoming poet Jan Minich to The Printed Garden on Friday night, March 31st. Jan will read from, answer questions about, and sign copies of his new poetry collection, Coming in to Grace Harbor.
This event is free and open to the public, and will begin at 7:00 p.m.