for michael

For Michael: A Collection of Poems for Michael Jason Nuzzo
By Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan

“There have been several books of poetry about the loss of children, including my own. Once only the topic of occasional poetry, the death of a child consumes entire books that mourn, horror, but never quite transcend, this deep, into personal parental loss. Poets of vastly different styles – formal, free, abstract, symbolic, confessional, etc. – tend to use the same diction as Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan in her powerful collection, For Michael, which I highly recommend. As in other collections, hers is the diction of love, anger and despair, flattened at times by the inability of words to describe the loss of a beloved child. That flatness startles you in For Michael when you least anticipate it, as in ‘My 44th Birthday Poem,’ whose opening lines read: ‘Today Martha Stewart went home from prison/ to begin her five-month house arrest; I am going into my ninth year. …’ The lyric, “Trying to Make Sense,’ of course, cannot make sense of how a higher power can take away a child from a parent – brutally rip, in this case – Michael from his mother who asks: ‘Were you destined to be another Hitler, Stalin?/ …Why else would the fates allow you to be killed/ simply crossing the street?’ All she can make sense of in this poem is the date Michael’s heart stopped beating in 1995. Alas, this book demands to be read and shared with as many people as possible, and there is a reason: We need to make sense of love lost, because all of us will lose love, have it ripped away violently or shorn quietly, reminding us, as Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan does, that everything is on loan in this life, with only dates to remind us, and even they fade away after the mourners are gone. But not poems. Not poems. And for this, and for Michael, we must embrace these beautiful, horrible verses.”
-Michael Bugeja, author of The Art & Craft of Poetry, Writer’s Digest Books

Publisher: North Sea Poetry Scene Press (2007)
Language: ‎English
Paperback: 39 pages
ISBN: 9780976279532


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