Shepard Street Press
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This collection of poems, published after the death of Mary R. Rice, as a memorial, provides poems that grapple with the sinfulness and courage of humans as well as the sheer ecstasy of natural blessings.
The poem "Good Friday 2002, Boston" juxtaposes appeals to God for mercy alongside the shouts of protestors who feel the Catholic church has forsaken them. Here is an excerpt, the final stanza:
Around the cathedral a circle
and more are here than inside
For whom do we ask mercy
The poem "Angels" presents the fiat of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as an occurence all of us wish to imitate, if only we could trust the invisible good messengers:
This was an annunciation, and a query.
The angel telling Mary, Queen of Heaven
this time, or about to be, queen
indeed of the angels: You're up,
here's your destiny. Will you go for it?
And don't we all wish for such
a messenger, impeccable however
embellished, saying: Hello, here's your future,
Trust it if you dare.
Too, Rice is a poet philosopher. Her poems about nature capture contemplation.
Numb, the rose
bush waits winter.
Spring brings pruning
each stalk cut
to a nub
leaves gone like
the flowers before.
But the roots
reach out, gather
in, sap rises
new stalks grow
new leaves and
large perfect roses.
This collection of poetry, Angels and Anarchists, is like the rose bush. Perennial. It will blossom again.
—Mary Ann Sullivan