The poems in CULTIVATING EXCESS are highly innovative yet also very much in the tradition of Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and Adrienne Rich. They use exact language and build up a series of interconnections within and across the poems. Take just the title. It weds two words that tend to be perceived in opposition, but here the cultivation that informs the environmental component of her writing is linked with an overflowing that inverts expectations and rescues the cultivating female from the patriarchal domain of an enclosed space and sets her loose in the terrain of sexual politics. Precision of language is seen, for instance, in her use of surveying and timber terminology. Anderson's excess is not that of "excessive," but that of "exceeding," as in exceeding expectations, which marks both her own achievement but also the expanding of horizons for the reader in the ways that the poems connect ecology and feminism, the individual and the world. Like Marianne Moore, Anderson places demands on her readers and we benefit from rising to the challenge. — Patrick D. Murphy
For more commentary, see Ecofeminist Literary Criticism by Greta Gaard and Patrick D. Murphy as well as Farther Afield in the Study of Nature-Oriented Literature by Patrick D. Murphy.
Cover Art is by Angelina Moreno.
CULTIVATING EXCESS is available here.