Ring Finger, Left Hand


75 pages
ISBN 1-55050-181-X
DDC C811'.6





Olga Costopoulos teaches English at the University of Alberta.


Katherine Lawrence has written a sordid little book of
dysfunctional-family poems. She has rounded up all the usual
permutations and combinations of an unhappy family. The poetry is
sharply observed docudramatic ugliness, but it is remarkably well
written. The volume puts one in mind of Mary Karr’s celebrated memoir
Liars’ Club. There is a knowingness shared by all children of
difficult parents, and the speaker of Lawrence’s poems has seen and
knows all. The sequencing of poems gives the collection a strongly
narrative flavor, almost like a sonnet sequence. But this is no
renaissance: the poet is concerned with examining and illuminating a
personal recrudescence, and intent on taking her readers with her. In
sum, Ring Finger, Left Hand is quite compelling, in a crude way.


Lawrence, Katherine., “Ring Finger, Left Hand,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 25, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/9394.