North Northeast speaks of old New England: Leslie Dewey and his flower farm, Carrie Wolf and her tar paper shack, ice-harvesting in winter, a woodstove’s “gossiping.” Rennie & Sarah McQuilkin bring it all to us in the spare, clear images of a Wyeth. For thirty-four years the McQuilkins have lived on a small farm in Simsbury, Connecticut. For many of those years they bred sheep in a pasture they fenced themselves, and kept hogs in a pen behind the large barn adjoining their colonial farmhouse. They now tend to no animals other than Hobo the cat and a rare assortment of frogs in the bog out back, but they still delight in the occasional bear that wanders by and the tom turkey’s spring mating display along the edge of the northwestern woods. Also frequenting the pages of this new edition are the three children who grew up on the farm: Eleanor, Sarah and Robin. They and their children are an ongoing joy to Sarah and Rennie. All share the artistic gift that led to the delightful pen-and-ink drawings in North Northeast.
About the 1985 edition of North Northeast, Dick Allen wrote, “These poems hold usstock still, making us react to what we may have observed but not realized before: a defunct tobacco barn, an abandoned greenhouse, a man who collects thousands of bones, grapes with ‘misty skin like a mooning lover’s eyes.’” Allen noted that “In Wyeth,” his favorite poem from the book, contains Rennie McQuilkin’s poetic credo:
“What appeals to me most about this book, I think,” commented Constance Carrier, “is the directness of the language and of the imagery, a directness with overtones that echo...the people are drawn as simply as figures in a primitive painting, but the hand that drew them is skilled and sensitive, leaving out only the extraneous.”
Click here to read five sample poems.
ISBN: ISBN 978-0-9770633-3-8
$20.00US per book
Handling (First Class/Priority): $5.00 for 1-2 books, $7.00 for 3-4
Tax for CT residents: 6%
International Shipping and Handling: $10.00US for 1-2 books, $15.00US for 3 or more
To order, send check payable to Antrim House for book/s, sales tax (CT only) and shipping:
Antrim House, PO Box 111, Tariffville, CT 06070
or buy with PayPal
Fresh from the elegant park at Coole
I hear them again, close overhead,
CEREMONY, INDIAN SUMMER
The afternoon ripens, the whip-poor-will
resume their ritual, arched bodies coiled
above the bridal dance
And deeper down in the angling light
the color of the lingering sun,
is so complete each red-gold, black-lined
It’s that time of year,
How early the freeze, I’d say
the earth. It’s stiff,
Once it was us against the beetles,
in white. Now look.
a seam of them, still perfect.
kneel down to sift for more.
ROCK BAND WITH FIREFLIES
at the strobe-lit dance of a summer school
how it matches the fireflies sparking over
the fireflies flashing like an amplifier’s
|Back to the TOP of the page|