Book Review: The Wingless

The Wingless

by Cecilia Llompart

Series: Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series


63 pages

Genre: Poetry

Final Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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My Thoughts:

I loved the way the way the poems are laid out in this book. There are 4 parts: Hymnal, Almanac, Wherever We Roam and Take My Body Home.

The first part of the book contained many lines that I found thought-provoking and beautiful, but there was no one poem in the Hymnal section that really stood out to me as a whole. In other words, they would have great starts, but as they went on, I’d get lost with where it was going.

Part II, Almanac, was much more enjoyable. Llompart includes a poem for every month of the year.  Each one takes us on a splendid journey of the seasons.  The imagery is so vivid, it feels the words themselves are alive.  The parts that follow were equally enjoyable. I found myself bookmarking more and more poems the further I read.

Wherever We Roam starts with a poem titled Eight Buffalo. The poems that follow countdown with different animals: Seven Wolves, Six Owls, Five Horses, etc.  These poems were fun and deep all at the same time. It reminded me of the musings of a traveler on a safari, observing different animals along the way and trying to make sense of them.

Overall, these poems live up to what I expect out of a poetry book: Deep, intelligent, thought-provoking, and capable of painting stunning imagery.

The only reason I gave it a 3.5 rather than 4 stars is because, as I mentioned earlier, I had a bit of difficulty getting the full feel of the first few poems in the book.  It’s a very quick read, at only 63 pages, but it is well worth it.

Favorite Poems/Lines:

from Blessed Are the Wingless

Blessed are the wingless, for their bones
are not hollow but heavy with want.


March is rabbit-eyed, homesick
for the bramble and its drupelet fruit.

Winter is already a lost shape, forgotten
in the ground. Instead here is Spring

with all the grace of a woman
smoothing her apron. And the sun,

a yellow-breasted bird perched on
one of the many shoulders of the sky.

For want of a pot, I packed soil into
an old boot. Now the rosemary grows

yearlong. I dreamed it was a beard
on your face, that it flowered at a kiss.


August carries a flute of bees,
drums up the heat. I have seen

a crow consider a heap of straw
with more sense than I have

considered entire days. Seen an old
dog care for a roll in the grass

More than it cared for this thing
called dignity. Even a few

misplaced seeds have grown taller
than I’ll grow. What of me is worthy

even to sit in the red shade of an oak
and its desire to touch at more sky?

from Seven Wolves

That one wolf would alone
have the hankering for the lean girl
in red that entered the woods
is the naïve version of the story.
We know these hungry creatures come
in their packs…

from Interludes

The years nest
like cats.
Not without claws,
not beyond
a little scratching.

Final Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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