The lyric poems in Daye Phillippo's radiant debut collection Thunderhead explore faith, motherhood, family, and community. As the author has put it, she has lived her life "backwards," first raising a large family, then going back to school, and only now seeing her work find its way into print.
Rooted in Midwestern farm country near where she grew up, these place-based poems reflect a spiritual practice: searching for--and expecting to find--the sacred in the ordinary world of trees and weeds and seasons.
Here you will find red-rooted pigweed and red-wing blackbirds, cornfields, woods, streams, gardens, and the creatures (human and otherwise) who inhabit them, in addition to a wide night sky filled with stars, and the ancient underground river, the Teays, that throbs and flows beneath them all.
During a thunderstorm, Phillippo wonders: "what if, / in choosing words to ponder we choose / our countenance, too?" The poems in this collection offer us not only a compelling self-portrait, but a mirror in which we may better see who we are and might become.