Book Report: Terse Verse by Roberta Page (1973)

Book coverThis hardback comes from Carleton Press, a self-publishing firm, in 1973. Not only is it a hardback in a dust jacket, but the dust jacket is Mylar-wrapped, so someone thought highly of it. Perhaps Ellen Massey, the teacher extraordinaire, to whom the book is inscribed.

One might think of this as grandmother poetry, based on the photo on the back, but the author bio indicates that she still has a child in the house. I certainly made that mistake; she’s likely in her late thirties or early forties when this book came out, so not grandmother yet.

It doesn’t touch on the normal grandmother poetry themes of religion, patriotism, and so on. Instead we get short (well, terse is right in the title) bits about personal relationships and whatnot. The poems’ lines are not short, so she’s not a Professional, but many of the works are light on imagery and heavy on abstractions and explaining emotions.

So the poetry is not very memorable or compelling to a poetry glutton like me, but she must have been very proud of it, and she pursued her dreams, spending likely thousands of dollars in the process.

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