Dancing in Place: Poems by S. Renay Sanders ISBN 978-8182500488 Paperback pp 64 Rs 395
Chock full of song and timbre and truth on every page, Renay Sander’s Dancing in Place is an intimate look into the landscape of Northern Ohio’s working class. Metal lunch boxes, lace-up boots; women in pert party dresses with Bibles tucked safely in their purses, this collection showcases the realities, the courage and honor it takes for “hometown’ culture to survive urban growth. The way people living in these communities lean into one another to preserve the rich roots of where it all began – with the music. The tempo of the rain hitting the ground, the cadence of cicadas; from those early primal connections fixed in mountain music, to Polka, to Rock and Roll, to Up Town Funk.
“Believe me reader, you will feel the beat.” — Kari Gunter-Seymour Author of Serving, Poet Laureate, Athens, OH
“Dancing in Place delivers a generous serving of poetry from a lady with her sleeves rolled up at the all-night cafeteria across from the music club. Memories, characters, emotions, experience, all the ingredients. Savor the word song.” —Chuck Joy, Poet Laureate, Erie County PA
“Renay Sander’s poems celebrate post industrial Cleveland while hearkening back to her Appalachian roots. These are lyrics laced with wry humor and raw emotion that dance “in the light of the full now moon.” Feel their pull and sway.” —Ray MacNeice, author of Love Song for Cleveland, host of the Tongue-in-Groove poetry jam
The voice in Renay Sanders’ debut collection, Dancing in Place, is both knowing and pondering. Exploration of the ethereal realm of a veiled bridge or a ghostly fiddle bow is skillfully balanced against the tangible world of metal lunch boxes and AM radio in a parked car. These are poems of place: Cleveland’s blue collar, rock and roll history; a homespun mountain landscape; the inner life of spirit. The reader is guided into the particular atmosphere of each via the poet’s deft images, her clear and nearly audible voice.” Barbara Sabol, author of Solitary Spin