Margaret R. Sáraco's gift is her ability to translate the every day acts of living, into unique, beautiful moments of poetry. This work, which we can find ourselves in, is generous, kind, brilliant, and shot through with a bit of sadness which highlights the moments of joy. Composed of tight language, beautiful images, and resonant sound, If There is No Wind is to be kept close at hand as a companion and guide.
If There Is No Wind is a book of frank wonder—frank in its clear-eyed assessment of “human cruelty,” asking “What will become of us?”; wonder at the healing beauty of nature, family, art, “the ordinary, the lived in.” In taking all of this on, Margaret R. Sáraco reminds us that “We, the flawed, inherit the earth,” but this news should be as much comfort as indictment. After all, it suggests that “you are not alone,” and that “there can still be great//abundance.” These poems are, in a wounded time, a much-needed salve.—
What a revelation Margaret Sáraco’s book is! Brilliant, beautiful, and especially comforting. Her words are a gateway to a safe place of imagination and to a world of warm memories. Her poems are recipes on how to live in the natural world and how to move through life. She writes of being emotionally awake and receptive and gives us a guide on how to live in a challenging world. Her “paintings” reveal so many spaces where I want to live, and I truly know that is possible. I have her book in-hand and have read it again and again. Three times so far …
Sáraco's country of poetry goes from the wide expanse of a prose poem like "No Guarantees" to the narrowed focus of grief in "On Hearing of My Mother’s Death." This is a voice of ordinary speech elevated to a height that allows it to travel great distances and reach many places and people. Reading the entire collection, you hear the music in the call and response of the poems. A windstorm that blows down "a branch like poetry" and later "presses and pushes against the earth" also shakes a tree's leaves and "presses them to respond." If a freewheelin' Dylan said that the answer is blowin’ in the wind, Sáraco reminds us that "if there is no wind, there is no answer."—
Sáraco's collection of poems is the result of a deep and empathic listening, with an eye toward detail, often so miniscule and simple, as to be overlooked. The forces of nature with all its inherent beauty and unpredictability merges with dreams, memory, lineage, and inheritance, to create a lens through which to make sense of a world in which joy and suffering exist in a world changed by school shootings and domestic terrorism, but also cognizant of the precious act of waking up and taking another breath. These poems will make you think and feel, while making you grateful to be alive.
If There Is No Wind intertwines human, nature and spirit. Margaret R. Saráco is courageous and wise. These poems are faith. They know strong roots support a journey amid a lifetime’s joy, grief and wonders. I am reminded with the words “...the woods leave me” that there are challenges one faces and we sometimes question our road. Saráco embraces her trials and displays her inner questioning and knowing and remembering. This collection is her gift to us, the earthbound