A Review by Kelly Jarvis: A Poetry Collection that Casts a Spell
Each poem in Stephanie Parent’s collection Every Poem a Potion, Every Spell a Song showcases the poet’s love for traditional and popular variants of fairy tales that shape women’s lives.
In a stunning blend of personal confession and narrative exploration, Parent weaves modern life into the plots of famous fairy tales like Cinderella, Snow White, and Rapunzel and introduces readers to lesser-known stories such as The Juniper Tree, Vasilisa the Beautiful, and The Maiden Without Hands.
Often, as is the case with her series of poems on Jorinda and Joringel, Parent presents fairy tale plots through multiple lenses, providing new and seasoned readers with innovative ways of understanding the characters. Using words and images that both burn and soothe, Parent leads her readers to confront the beauty and horror of fairy tales as a way of exploring their own relationships, responsibilities, and desires, ultimately concluding that the tales, while imperfect, help us all to discover our identities and save ourselves.
The writing in Parent’s collection will cast a spell over readers as they revel in her poetic potions which mingle the mundane with the magical, breathing new life into the old stories that remain an important part of our future.
You can find Every Poem a Potion, Every Spell a Song HERE.
Kelly Jarvis teaches classes in literature, writing, and fairy tale at Central Connecticut State University, The University of Connecticut, and Tunxis Community College. She lives, happily ever after, with her husband and three sons in a house filled with fairy tale books. She is also Enchanted Conversation’s special project’s writer.