I am pleased– very pleased– to report that my chapbook, Shards of Blue, is now in print. It seemed more real when I had the galley proofs in hand for review, but that’s not the same as holding the finished product– the book itself.
Shards of Blue is a collection of 25 poems that tell the story of the lives of my great-great-grandparents, John and Mary Ratcliff, from their move to Kansas in 1855 as part of an abolitionist community. It continues through the Civil War, in which John was seriously wounded, through the years after the war, during which John became depressed (perhaps post-traumatic stress syndrome), and during which he had a divorce with the young woman they had hired to help on the farm. The book ends with their divorce and Mary striking off on her own, with their four youngest sons, to homestead in Smith County, Kansas.