Broken Ritual by Jacinta Victoria White


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broken ritual takes us on a stirring journey of mending broken bonds—of daughterhood, of birthright, of matrimony. A photographer in a darkroom of verse, Jacinta Victoria White skillfully wields the faint, nuanced light of loss – through the broken limbs of a family tree rooted on a slave plantation, through the protracted broken vows of marriage, through her father’s final polishing of his shoes ‘shinier than stars in a darkened sky’ – until what remains has the power to heal. To enter broken ritual is to walk into an emotional hall of mirrors, revealing this truth: There is beauty to be found in the breaking. Thank God this poet has the gift to capture it for us.”

–Ayo Heath, poet and author of Oneness

“There is something exquisitely deliberate and compelling in broken ritual byJacinta Victoria. We are not spared anything here. Instead, we are given the respect from a poet who believes her reader can pay attention in the midst of the fiercest encounter and most intimate experience. If you do attend to these poems, what you receive is a sheer gift.

Like a concert violinist drawing a perfectly angled bow against each string with dark resonance or bright clarity, dipping her whole body into deepening sound and sense – in each line, the images and details of life come alive.

I feel assured you, like I was, will be drawn in. I had not choice but to lean forward and be nearer to listen to the heart of this fine concerto of work.”

–John Fox, author of Poetic Medicine: The Healing Art of Poem-Making

broken ritual is a poetic reckoning with grief, a fierce gaze that ceremoniously tends to loss. Jacinta Victoria draws the reader into palpable empty spaces, where we ache, thus rendering us both witness and participant. As Jacinta Victoria effectively ministers to the fault lines of her life, she creatively births a mosaic – a piece-together new ritual — alive in these cleverly crafted poems.”

–Glenis Redmond, Poet, Kennedy Center Teaching Artist

Broken Ritual by Jacinta Victoria White
Epilogue BCB