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The Bench

The Bench by Cassondra Windwalker $12 + $3 shipping

Winner of the 2020 Helen Kay Chapbook Contest

The Bench by Cassondra Windwalker






The force of fiction, the rhythm of poetry, Windwalker’s latest places tangible inanimacy at the intersection of heartbreaking experience. About writing, John Prine said, “Save your details for things that exist.” With The Bench, Windwalker drags her unique scalpel into the center of a year that exists beyond comprehension. The result is an uncompromising narrative, stitched together by tragedy, injustice and oppression. —Noah C. Lekas, poet of Saturday Night Sage

Windwalker’s documentary-like precision expertly weaves a poetry of witness centering on a seemingly simple bench that operates as a lyrical thread to hold these artfully rendered poetic narratives together. “What does a bench say,” Windwalker asks readers to consider, telling us that “this testament to frailty became a repository of strength.” So, too, does the bench become a place for the reader to rest, for Windwalker has invited us “to sit here and listen” so we can “take the stories” with us when we go. As we listen, as we read, it is impossible to forget these poems, these snapshots into lives like or unlike our own, but all too familiar in our shared story, our shared humanity.—Molly Fuller, author of For Girls Forged By Lightning and Always A Body