Hello Again!

March 7, 2016

I’ve been asking myself why I wanted to revitalize this blog. There were several reasons for my disappearance, not the least of which was the loss of a devoted friend who was my partner when I started CavanKerry Press. Absorbing all of my focus, my life-giver in the face of this loss became my latest book, Orphans. I want to talk about orphans on this blog, about losing parents or close ones well after childhood…but I want to know you too, your books, your thoughts and feelings. About poetry. About literature in general. About life.

What I’m hoping to do is to convince you that poetry is a worthy art and is necessary to all of us.

With this blog, I’m joining my lives, my loves: my profession as a poet and also as a psychologist. My belief in the psyche and the unconscious and the ways each get played out in our lives—with ourselves, with spouses, parents, children, friends.

Poetry is the quiet listener. A poem speaks and we hear and are comforted or fortified, validated, reassured. Even people who hate poetry admit that they’ve written about their struggles in life—often in adolescence.  Some poems heal by taking us away, but most poems heal because they tell us we’re not alone.

There’s so much to say about poetry.

Is it all it’s cracked up to be? Does it do its job?

What is its job?

What does it do for me? For you?

Let’s ask each other questions; let’s wax brilliant about our obsessions.

Let’s talk to each other.

Everyone’s invited. Everyone belongs.

You can just listen if that’s all you’re up for. But I’d love you to speak out, too.


About Joan Cusack Handler

Joan Cusack Handler is a poet and memoirist, and a psychologist in clinical practice. Her poems have been widely published and have received awards from The Boston Review and five Pushcart nominations. More »

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