Memory and Spirits Haunt in Shara McCallum’s Mad Woman

Written by Yashika Graham for Susumba on Sunday, December 18th, 2016

The collection, which finds grounding in the author’s Jamaican upbringing, moves through standard English and Jamaican patois, and seems at the same time to be journeying and grasping for root, for a known connection.

The mad woman then is not just mad, not just an upheaval without reason or purpose. The poems speak to her awareness of self and origin, of a deep grounding. She is at once hungry for freedom, occupied with unrest and charting into action. McCallum delivers these truths with accessible, skillful and organic use of form, all the while attentive, and without excesses.