Book Scene: Illuminating reverence, resilience and reverie | Explore Yakima

“Poems are gifts to the attentive.”

— Paul Celan

Marie Marchand is the current poet laureate of Ellensburg. Her newest and second collection is “Gifts to the Attentive.” This collection is divided into three sections: Reverence, Resilience and Reverie. The beginning poems are about mental illness and the recovery process, and Marchand has dedicated the book to mental health providers who have helped her.

In the second section, the poet writes:

“My watershed moment came

when I changed my mind

about suicide.”

In this section, Marchand’s poems are quiet, lovely and hopeful, filled with promise. There is a melancholy poem titled “Triumph,” in which a child is frozen in his fear, trying to ride a bike. After minutes of fear, the child goes inside for a drink and returns with newfound determination. He then gets on his bike and rides off. His mother watches and “cheers with a wild joy that blinds me to the space that grows between us.”

In the third section, Marchand gifts the reader with poems of nature and of love. She mentions many classic poets, such as Keats, Celan and Yeats, who have influenced her poetry.

“Gifts to the Attentive” is a poetry collection that is a journey through mental illness, and into meditation, love and life. It is a book that asks to be read both aloud and silently.

Marie Marchand will be reading from and signing her book at Inklings Bookshop from 1-2 p.m. Sept. 10.

• “Gifts to the Attentive” by Marie Marchand was published by Winter Goose Publishing on May 20. It retails for $10.99.

• Sue Domis works for Inklings Bookshop. She and other Inklings staffers review books in Sunday’s Explore section every week.

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