Poetry Porch Announcement

Finishing Line Press

is pleased to announce the publication of The Need for a Bridge by Joyce Wilson

June 2019 Review by David Katz:

Joseph Conrad once wrote that his task as an author is “to make you hear, to make you feel — it is, before all, to make you see.” In her deeply pleasurable new book of  20 poems, The Need for a Bridge, Joyce Wilson fulfills Conrad’s mission by engaging the reader’s ear, emotions, and vision. Wilson does so by focusing on a single area of human endeavor: the need people have for bridges, how they go about building them, how they (like civilizations) rise and fall, and the uses folks put to them. In a series of clearly drawn profile/portraits, she enables us to see the bridge through the eyes of a variety of people. First, there’s the perspective of “Seventy-year-old Miss Sally Fulton” waiting for a ferry in the 1700s, who may have felt the first inkling that a bridge over Massachusetts’s Fore River might make life easier. In subsequent poems, we assume the views of a commuter, a journalist, an engineer, a pilot, a baker (who’s transporting across the bridge a cake as “airy as goose down, the icing as sweet as a song”), and more. Particularly pleasurable is the way Wilson deploys her expert verse to depict the way technology works — describing, for instance, a temporary bridge called “Erector Set” as teetering on its “panels, pins, and bolts on shaky piers.” Ultimately, of course, bridges can’t be separated from the rivers they span, and Wilson ends with a celebratory meditation on both: “Let us observe/The time we spend together/And praise this bridge,/Our most recent endeavor./We look out over the water.”
        — David M. Katz, author of Stanzas on Oz and Claims of Home (both Dos Madres Press).



by Joyce Wilson

Finishing Line Press
P.O. Box 1626
Georgetown, Kentucky

Publishing date: February 15, 2019
A chapbook, 20 poems
Cover illustration by Allegra Printz.
$14.99 paper

Contact the bookstore of Finishing Line Press to order online.
You may also purchase a copy from the author here.



Finishing Line Press announces the publication of
The Need for a Bridge, a chapbook of poems by Joyce Wilson

Twenty original poems inspired by the bridge over the Fore River in Massachusetts.

Dear Friends,
I am delighted to announce the publication of my chapbook The Need for a Bridge. The 20 poems were inspired by driving over the Fore River bridge, getting stuck in traffic on the bridge, and researching the history of the many bridges that have covered the Fore River. I did not know, until I spent some time reading “The Patriot Ledger” archives at the Thomas Crane Library in Quincy (Massachusetts) that people have been complaining about the bridge going up and impeding traffic since 1918! We all have our stories about our frustration with the old bridge, and this book has formalized some of mine. It has been a meaningful endeavor to research these poems, present them at readings, and meet those of you who also know the bridge and have been inconvenienced trying to cross it. Some of you even live there. — JW, February 2019


“Send us a bridge to love, not love to hate.” What commuter stalled in “hurry-up-and-wait” traffic could fail to appreciate Joyce Wilson’s new collection The Need for a Bridge? These poems, intricate portraits spanning time and distance, celebrate connections. Through the power of poetry, we come to care about the Fore River Bridge and its people and see how this bridge has the capacity to remember.
        — Alice Kociemba, author of Bourne Bridge

The poems in Joyce Wilson’s new collection are quintessentially American in their concern for human connection and formal lyric expression. Her bridges span the generations of the particular lives that cross back and forth over them, as well as the surges of turbulent history that are never far from them — as her poem about Selma makes clear. The Need for a Bridge is both the necessity of recognizing our human limitations, and the poetry of transport.
        — George Kalogeris, author of Guide to Greece

    Joyce Wilson is editor of The Poetry Porch, a literary magazine on the Internet, which has been on-line since 1997. Her poems have appeared in many literary journals, among them American Arts Quarterly, Grey Sparrow, Ibbetson Street Magazine, and Main Street Rag. She has published a full-length poetry collection, The Etymology of Spruce, and a chapbook, The Springhouse (also with Finishing Line Press). She and her husband have lived in the same house in Scituate, on the South Shore of Boston, since 1975. (Author photo by John Goldie.)

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