Thursday, March 7, 2013

Review: Bring Down the Little Birds: On Mothering, Art, Work, and Everything Else


Bring Down the Little Birds: On Mothering, Art, Work, and Everything Else
Bring Down the Little Birds: On Mothering, Art, Work, and Everything Else by Carmen Gimenez Smith

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I actually read this little gem of a book twice(!). Carmen Gimenez Smith is a poet, mother of two, and an assistant professor at New Mexico State University in the English Department. Bring Down the Little Birds is her memoir that simultaneously works through trying to balance a family through her second pregnancy, her teaching, and her writing, while coming to terms with the fact of her own mother's cancer and failing memory.

She is really a beautiful and profound writer, and quite funny at times. She is honest with the sacrifices she makes for her family and children. Gimenez Smith writes poignantly about the internal conflicts that come with motherhood, like the dualism of selflessness and selfishness mothers are forced into. She also writes about the physical and emotional work that comes with having children, how easy it is to be unable to find yourself in mundane tasks like changing diapers and washing what seem to be eternally-full laundry baskets.

I really can't do this book justice in a few sentences. Gimenez Smith is a thoughtful and moving writer. She is able to capture the very essence of the largest conflicts within modern motherhood. Read it, love it, pass it on.



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