I received an advance copy of Wanda Deglane’s Lady Saturn for review purposes. As always, this review reflects only my honest opinions on the book.
[one_half_last]Publication Date: February 2019
Publisher: Rhythm & Bones Press
Lady Saturn by contemporary poet Wanda Deglane is in itself a navigation through depression and anxiety to find love – the utmost important self-love. [/one_half_last]
These personal poems traverse the backdrop of what it means to be born into chaos, to feel unwanted and unloved, to be constantly seeking and attempting self-discovery, to struggle to sleep with a racing mind or to defeat depression and anxiety with the help of a pill that makes her brain like her ‘mother’s old microwave, / constantly short-circuiting and casting the whole room / in darkness.’ Take this quest through beautiful, lyrical stanzas and vivid imagery depicting pain, trauma, depression, anxiety, and a deep yearning to land softly at a place on the verge of inner acceptance and love, just the way you are, seeking that happy-go-lucky soul you once inhabited.
“Sing to us of her who wears violents on her breasts. Sing especially of her who is wandering.” -Sappho
So begins Lady Saturn, with an epigraph that truly encompasses the spirit of this chapbook. I actually went into this review thinking I’d pick a favourite poem to quote from and go from there. However, picking up the book led to every few poems becoming my new favourites, and I quickly abandoned that task.
These poems intertwine the utterly human reality of trauma and mental illness with an indescribable, ethereal quality that makes even the crushing of a spider beautiful. Reading through these poems is like hearing Wanda’s voice, disembodied, speaking to you through the pages. It’s a wonderful experience
Lady Saturn starts with an image of birth–“you were born screaming.” It then glides through life and death just as easily as it does time and space. Here I can’t help but reference the cover–the imagery (shown above) is a beautiful complement to the pieces housed within.
This is a lovely collection that won’t take long to read. But it will stay with you long after.
About the Author:
Wanda Deglane is a night-blooming desert flower from Arizona. She is the daughter of Peruvian immigrants and attends Arizona State University, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in psychology and family & human development. Her poetry has been published or forthcoming from Rust + Moth, Glass Poetry, L’Ephemere Review, and Former Cactus, among other lovely places. Wanda self published her first poetry book, Rainlily, in 2018.