Capturing moments of her adult life, Smith pares down her prose to a state of vivid impressionism, so enigmatic that even ordinary acts – preparing mint tea, nodding off while sewing – take on spiritual weight. Smith cuts a lonely figure, offering a clearer view of herself in the act of observing than of what she observes ... Writing was not Smith's first choice...but any fans of her music will not be surprised by her mastery of it here.
Smith is well attuned to the otherworldly dimension of dreams and cosmic visions ... Intimiate and vaulting ... [Smith's] dark spell yielded poems of radiant wonder that can now be read as a lyrical companion to her National Book Award–winning memoir, Just Kids ... Smith looks to family history for sources of her artistic impulses and portrays herself in adulthood as a roaming mystic, journal in hand, heart and mind open. Exultations of concentrated beauty and mystery ignite Smith’s soulful poems about the making of an artist.
Smith's concise, lyrical essays invite the reader to dwell on the text ... Half beautiful language and metaphors, half raw emotion, this book (which includes a handful of personal photos) will inspire and influence a new generation of logophiles as they read and reread this absorbing, meditative work.
A slim, poetic memoir ... Ardent Smith fans may be enamored with her recollections, which range from mourning the family dog’s death to nebulous lines ... The writing elucidates, to some degree, Smith’s artistic path, with themes of ritualizing time and space rippling throughout ... Ethereal spins of innocence and enchantment.