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Book Cover Reveal! And Upcoming Events


Days of Grace & Silence Is Almost Here


I'm excited to share the cover of Days of Grace and Silence: A Chronicle of COVID's Long Haul. My new poetry collection will be out from Kelsay Books by the start of April, in time for National Poetry Month.


Stay tuned for news of my book launch and other readings. If you are interested in hosting a reading, author talk, workshop, or book club event, please contact me. I would love nothing more than to talk with you about my book! 

Book cover with painting of red house on a yellow bluff, with a blue sky and blue water in the distant background. Title text "Days of Grace and Silence: A Chronicle of COVID's Long Haul"

I am grateful to artist Scott Redden for allowing use of his painting Yellow Bluff (2007, 30"x30") as the cover image (you can view the full painting here). I am drawn to the serene and spare elegance of Scott's work, and the solitary image of a red (like mine!) house on a hill speaks to the quiet isolation and peace, even amid upheaval, that permeates the collection.


You may feel that ethos evoked in poet January Gill O'Neil's description of the collection:


In her evocative new collection Days of Grace and Silence, Ann Wallace delves into the profound question of living deliberately in the midst of a pandemic. With poignant insight, she guides us through this time of uncertainty as we coexist yet remain apart. Wallace’s poems serve as a profound documentation of our interior worlds and the lodestar that guide us. These missives are a gentle reminder that poetry is a tool for understanding and empathy, as we craft words as evidence to make sense of our lives. In the dailyness of her poems, Wallace uncovers the extraordinary concealed within the ordinary. This book is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit, making meaning and connections through adversity, offering readers a journey through the uncharted territories—the infinity of hope.


While I have you, I have to put in a plug for January's powerful new collection Glitter Road, which just came out from CavanKerry Press! (You can listen to my conversation with her about the book, for The WildStory, here.)


The Long COVID Reader at Hudson Valley Books for Humanity


More immediately, this weekend I am participating in a reading and discussion of The Long COVID Reader, edited by Mary Ladd. The event is both on Zoom and in person--and I hope you are able to join us to celebrate and share from this important collection.


About the The Long COVID Reader:

COVID-19 is possibly the world's biggest mass-disabling event. This ambitious book gives a humanized view of chronic illness while offering a poignant reminder of the millions of people with long COVID. The collection is rich with living history from the stories, essays, and poems of 45 long haulers.


Writer Mary Ladd, a one-time Anthony Bourdain collaborator, leads the team behind an accessible paperback, offering tales of persisting symptoms and navigating the healthcare system to poignant reflections on grief, loss, and hope. This anthology is a must-read for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the long-term effects of COVID-19.

Flyer for Long COVID Reader event at Hudson Valley Books for Humanity. Long COVID Reader book tower and photos of 5 participants set against a teal background.

Event Details

Saturday, Feb. 24:00-5:15PM EST

67 Central Avenue

Ossining, NY 10562

914-847-0773

Zoom registration here


The WildStory Enters Season Two!

The WildStory: A Podcast of Poetry and Plants recently released Episode 9, featuring poet Adrie Rose, author of Rupture from Gold Line Press, and land stewards John and Susan Landau.


My co-producer & co-host Kim Correro and I have a phenomenal roster of guests coming up, including Camille Dungy and Uli Lorimer in March; Ross Gay and Margaret Renkl & Billy Renkl in April; and Drew Lanham and Marielle Anzelone in May. You can listen to The WildStory on Spotify, iTunes and Amazon; for links to each platform, visit The Native Plant Society of New Jersey.


Leaning toward Light Reading on April 10


Mark your calendars, because on April 10, The WildStory is hosting its first in person event!  A Celebration of Poetry & Native Plants Tess Taylor, featuring readings by Tess and me, and a live Ask Randi with Dr. Randi Eckel.

Flyer for Leaning toward Light Event

Event Details

Wednesday, April 10

7:00-8:00 PM EST, followed by a reception and book signing

23 Main Street, Madison, NJ

Register here in advance (the event is free, but space is limited)



A Poem for You


Before I sign off, I leave you, as I often do, with a poem, "Standing in a Different Place," recently published by Eunoia Review and included in Days of Grace and Silence. In spring 2022, Krista Tippett rebroadcast her On Being interview with Irish poet John O'Donohue. As I listened, I was moved by his remarks about how our place in the world can shift in an instant, and we can suddenly finding ourself standing in a different place without having moved an inch. Many (perhaps all?) of us experienced this to varying degrees during the pandemic, and those shifts happen throughout our lives, particularly at moments of great joy and great sorrow.


Standing in a Different Place

 

I have not strayed far

from home, the tether

of my oxygen held taut

for too long, now flagging,

since a warm March

lap around Walden Pond before

it all shut down and my home

became a pulsing hotbed

of virus, of illness for weeks

turned to months to years.

 

I have not strayed far

and yet the world has

tilted on its axis, and I have too.

I scan the once-flat ground

for a new toehold

where I might find modest

purchase, take a breath and release

my tether, then engage these weary

muscles and reach

my hand up high

from my precious ledge,

groping for a new patch

of solid ground.


Take care, everyone, and thank you for reading!

Ann





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