The Philosopher's Daughter; Lori Desrosiers (Salmon Poetry)

The Philosopher's Daughter; Lori Desrosiers (Salmon Poetry)

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Lori Desrosiers’ collection of poems, The Philosopher’s Daughter starts with a child watching her father “conducting Beethoven in thin air” while her mother shouts, “Len, please, keep your hands on the wheel,” and ends with a grown woman Night Writing with “breasts round as similes.” Her father, Leonard Charles Feldstein, a Professor of Philosophy and a Psychiatrist, died young (when Lori was 28) of brain cancer. His life and death are the inspiration for these poems that read like skillfully drawn postcards. The poet’s family and thoughts arrive, page by page, in intimate, clear-eyed meditations. This volume invites the reader to witness the poet’s journey from girl to woman, from The Philosopher’s Daughter to Philosopher. - Sally Bellerose, author of The Girls Club (Bywater Books)

The Philosopher’s Daughter takes the reader on a ship tossed by the bittersweet memories of an American girl growing up in the 1950s to the continual self-discovery of a woman sculpted by passion and adversity. This American girl, who sends her Barbie down a river tied to a bottle of Prell Shampoo, is a daughter caught between her strong mother and her father, a noted philosopher, who succumbs after divorce to astrocytoma, a brain cancer “with star-shaped cells.” The calm surfaces of these poems that span Desrosier’s lifetime, belie her poignant imagery centered often in music and philosophy, imagery that makes leap and connections between mind and soul that surprise, wound and delight.

Lord, Lord, can you believe it?
The way you water the ferns.
Minor chord on a piano, resolves to major C.
Where the icicles used to hang.
The coat hooks on the wall are not even…
The way you look at me sometimes.
Bridges crumble in your eyes…


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