The most modern of roller coasters ride on soft rubber tires and slithery smooth tracks. Gone are the days of jouncing along on steel wheels, smacking over hard metal joints. So it is with this book. Although readers are hurtled through time, space, and a universe of emotions, the ride is seductively smooth—and the transitions surprisingly seamless.
In the prologue, our attention bends to bridges, free-tail bats, soldiers, and peacemakers. These poems prepare us to watch for hopeful signs in the work ahead. In the first section, the spiritual seems to flow into the geopolitical—not in a hammer-you-over-the-head kind of way but in a blood-through-the-heart sort of way. In the second section, the spiritual mingles with the organic in a more personal way. By the end of the ride, we are aware that we have taken a trip with an intellectually fearless bushwhacker leading the way.
Anyone who has ever contemplated The Simpsons, sex-offender registries, desert internment camps, bats in flight, wars that never end, “la virgen,” grasshoppers, Google, or the cosmos will find a kindred spirit in Maria Melendez and a warm welcome in her work.
“Humorous, energetic and fast-paced, Flexible Bones is a treasure trove of knowledge, highly recommended.” —Midwest Book Review