Glory in the Margins: Sunday Poems

Iron Pen. Sept. 2021. 176p. ISBN 9781640606777. $22. POETRY
Grimes (Garvey’s Choice; Bronx Masquerade) is a much-laureled writer of both prose and poetry with a special aptitude for writing material that will appeal to younger readers, including with a recent treatment of the life of current Vice President Kamala Harris. This most recent collection of her poems is explicitly devotional. Most of them derive inspiration from specific verses of Christian Scripture, cited at the conclusion of the poem; all of them were intended for delivery from the pulpit, as an adjunct to the worship life of Grimes’ home congregation, a small Brethren in Christ church in Riverside, California. As such, they form a sort of liturgical calendar in poetry: every month of the Church’s life, and certainly all its great occasions, are treated here. Grimes has a gift for direct, flowing expression, and her poems are both devout and memorable: “Here he comes,/ the Word walking/ in a pool/ of his own light.”
VERDICT Grimes’s unfussy verse, at once personal in faith and public in delivery, will find an audience among Christian readers and a place in the worship services of congregations looking for artistic expressions of the Church’s year.
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