Lucy / your secret book / that you leaned over and wrote just in the dirt-- / Not having to have an ending / Not having to last. . .
So begins Jean Valentine's provocative new work, Lucy, a poem that pays homage to the three-million-year-old skeleton of the earliest known hominid. Through the juxtaposing of objects, people, and events--from a postage stamp to Newton, from Chekhov to Iraq--this poem, with a deep sense of gratitude and profound longing, celebrates the creative power of the female by introducing us to one of our oldest human ancestors.
"Lucy's assurance is ancient, that is its beauty, the poem goes back to the earliest of them all. It really is a retrieval not just of Lucy but of an ethos, a faith--in the human and in the poem itself, as being two-in-one. I find there are moments in it that really restore belief. This does not happen often." -- Fanny Howe