Carlinda D’Alimonte’s second collection of poems, Other Living Things (2009), explores the hard process of undoing the hurt of childhood and adolescence. The poems give a voice to the lingering ghosts of neglect, humiliation, loss, and abuse experienced by those least able to fight back. The poems hint to the self-destructive fallout of those early experiences: namely, obsessions and highly charged emotions.
According to one reviewer, “In Other Living Things, treating subjects such as bullying and abuse with respect for victims and displaying dignity in language, D’Alimonte provides a voice for those who cannot articulate their own pain. D’Alimonte speaks for herself, bravely revealing parts of her own life that are witnessed family histories told sensitively. In one poem, ‘Montreal Massacre,’ she describes the impact of grief of the national tragedy on a family sharing a meal at home. Particularly moving is ‘Mother’s Apology’ about a reconciliation attempt between mother and daughter which recognizes the impact of an apology on the one who must accept it” (Sarah Jarvis). “You” conveys a shaky cell phone video capturing the sounds and images of boys circling two of their own chanting, “fight/fight/fight.” In “Breathing”, a young mother completely bound to her infant’s breath is quietly haunted by the kitchen “window, aware of something out there/mocking [her].”
Other Living Things is the fifth in the Black Moss Press series 64/10 – 64 pages for10 dollars – designed to make poetry books more affordable.