Review of Bad Daughter by Nick McCrae
The daughter one is, the daughters one has, the daughters those daughters may one day bring into the world. Sarah Gorham's poems are remarkable for their sureness of touch, their fine economies, their penetrating aptitude for surprise: Bad Daughter is the book of a poet writing at the height of her powers and confidence. And more: with the sly, recursive logic of prayer-and-trespass or family trait, the book builds a whole that burnishes each of its parts. An essay-for-grownups on love and faithlessness.
I have long admired the exquisite poise – as well as the wisdom and disarming grace – of Sarah Gorham’s poetry. Her newest collection, Bad Daughter, offers meticulously observed meditations arising from a kaleidoscope of familial relationships centering upon mothers and daughters. This is Sarah Gorham’s most powerful and eloquent book yet, a sequence of sustained poetic reckonings upon the demands, despairs, and delights of family – both past and present – and the revelations that emerge in the course of the well-lived life. This is a collection of boundless pleasures.
–David St. John