A Speaker Readers Can Root For – Three Poems by Laurinda Lind

High Desert Journal - Issue 29Magazine Review by Katy Haas

Three poems by Laurinda Lind can be found in Issue 29 of High Desert Journal: “When I Lived in Soda Springs, Idaho & I Had a Belly at the Bar,” “When I Lived in Soda Springs, Idaho & the Cashier at the Convenience Store Was Friendly to Me,” and “When I Lived in Soda Springs, Idaho & I Had Not Yet Killed a Black Widow Spider.”

This series of prose poems is strong in its storytelling. They read quickly with sentences that run on as if the speaker can’t wait to get the words out. The speaker is not the only person in these pieces. They all include other people the speaker interacts with, a cast of characters that Lind brings to life for us: her neighbor “who later stole several hundred dollars from me & nearly killed my cat,” the “old guy” who “wanted to buy us beers,” the friendly cashier who was “short & pretty” with “huge green eyes” and later robbed the store she worked at, and the man who calls her and harasses her over the phone.

There’s an edge to the writing, a take-no-nonsense attitude in every piece. The speaker is a woman who is surviving against the odds in this strange, unfamiliar place with people and animals who make living there difficult. Lind fleshes out a speaker who readers can root for.