elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

2015 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: In My Neighborhood by Giovanna Capone

In My Neighborhood by Giovanna Capone
Lesbian Poetry
Paperback: 140 pages
Publisher: Bedazzled Ink Publishing Company (December 30, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1939562708
ISBN-13: 978-1939562708
Amazon: In My Neighborhood
Amazon Kindle: In My Neighborhood

"A living, breathing love song to the poet's heritage and the many ways it shaped the fierce and independent woman that she has become today." -Maria Mazziotti Gillan, American Book Award winner for All That Lies Between Us "Capone paints a vivid picture, whose themes of love and loss will resonate with many, as they are simultaneously both personal and universal." -Mary Saracino, novelist, poet, and memoir writer, author of Heretics: A Love Story In My Neighborhood is a lyrical, humorous, and provocative book documenting Giovanna Capone's search for a political and personal identity as an Italian-American raised in an old world traditional family, who later claims herself as a lesbian and a political activist. From beginning to end, through poetry, essay, and memoir, she explores her journey both emotionally and geographically, as she leaves the hub of her ethnic identity in New York, and enters the world beyond her childhood. Her writing is bound by a search for love, freedom, and ethnic identity, and also by her feminist politics and point of view. Her beloved heritage is an ever-present touchstone as she examines her roots and describes her adult life and developing consciousness.

The only sin of this collection is that it left me wanting more. It's a slim volume, lacking perhaps the meatiest tidbits of queer experience, but the constant and touching thread throughout is the poet's immigrant heritage. This heritage is related in verse simultaneously accessible and moving. Several times I found myself on the edge of tears without knowing why, the words having sunk into me without my awareness and provoked deep empathy.

This year, the submissions for Lesbian Poetry I was tasked to read were varied in style and story telling.  In My Neighborhood was written as a series of short stories following Giovanna Capone's life from a young girl to and adult in an Italian neighborhood. The richness of each of these vignettes had me immersed in her culture and her maturation. This was a enchanting read from beginning to end, and I look forward to looking up more of Ms. Capone's past poetry.

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Tags: rainbow awards 2015

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