Never the Loss of Wings
Maryhelen Snyder, Never the Loss of Wings (Baltimore, MD: Passager Books, 2015)
Maryhelen Snyder married into a family where poetry was treasured and even expected. Both her father-in-law and her mother-in-law were treasured teachers of mine and both assigned poetry to me as a student at a phase in my life where I wasn't even reading much poetry, let alone trying to write it. The family, however, remained steeped in poetry as a way to express ideas and sentiments that reach beyond prose and other forms of expression. Maryhelen, however, has grown beyond her in-laws and into her own style of poetry. Although I think I can recognize some of the roots of her writing in the work of Ross and Martha's work, Maryhelen's work is uniquely her own.
This volume is definitely shaped by both her emotional maturity and having gone through the journey of grief with her eyes wide open and her heart ready to accept all that life has to teach even in the moments of pain and sadness and loss. The poems demonstrate a depth that invites the reader to sit with each one for a while, to read it over and over and to allow the thoughts to linger. I received this book as a birthday present and limited myself to only one poem each day so that I could mull and ponder the poems.
Several, including "I am Saddened at Moments by Loss" from which the title of the book is drawn, are poems that I have used when making presentations to group about the process of grief.
The book is a treasure and I am grateful to have been given a copy.