Generous and generative in scope, the engaging poems of Jennifer Horne’s Little Wanderer range widely, wandering freely between places and times, between personae—a Priestess at Delphi, Anna Akhmatova in Oxford—and the personal. Here “[t]ime is a series of scrims”; departures and arrivals blur as landscapes guide, “each new route unfolding in a moving frieze.” Through travel, Horne shows us, even something of “the heart’s fractures” can be knitted, the self never escaped but rather returned, renewed, resurrected.
Editor of Deep Travel: Contemporary American Poets Abroad
“Traveling, I’ve learned,” says a character in one of Jennifer Horne’s poems, “is all too seldom / what you pictured.” Horne dramatizes this truth in poems that take her readers all over the globe, from the Greek islands to trains in Eastern Europe and, finally, back to her homeland of America. Her poet’s eye misses nothing. Here is a chance to travel enjoyably through the medium of poetry without leaving one’s favorite chair.
Author of Finding Ireland: A Poet’s Explorations of Irish Literature and Culture
Poem as lyric travelogue, poet as “little wanderer”—this is the basis for Jennifer Horne’s new book of poems set in Greece, Italy, Romania, England, Ireland, and the southern U.S.
These chronicles of journeys and encounters explore what one poem calls “the etiquette of the traveler, / the grace of the grateful guest / as she takes her leave” and ask what responsibilities the traveler has to the people and places she meets, and to their histories.
The poems acknowledge both the aesthetic highs and mundane lows of moving about in the world: sometimes you take the metro and emerge “somewhere you never meant to go.”
Yet, despite the vagaries of travel, Horne finds kinship wherever she goes. Sending a series of postcards from destinations as varied as Athens, Bucharest, Prague, Oxford, Sligo, and Tuscaloosa, she concludes, “Travel’s coordinates are distance and time, / little things, really, small matters, / next to love’s bright lines.”