Strong Woman: A Collection of Poems by Anna Casamento Arrigo is a deeply moving examination of love found, love lost, motherhood, childhood and surviving a stroke. The poems are honest and powerful, each written with passion. The poet exposes her fears, desires, disappointments and dreams in intimate detail. Within the text are black & white photographs that illustrate the moods of the poems. I have worked in black & white, which is actually a myriad of shades, for decades and love the medium that cuts through the distraction sometimes found in color to express emotions with clarity and impact. Ms. Arrigo has written children’s books, a romantic thriller and a memoir as well as volumes of poems. Eight years after a stroke she continues on a healing journey and quotes Robert Frost, “I have miles to go before I sleep.” Woman Strong is a journal of that healing process both women and men will identify with.
Nonfiction informs the world. Fiction can change it by humanizing the plight of others. Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist shocked the British people with the suffering of child labor. They demanded Parliament act where reformers had tried and failed. Every story draws us together as a society. Some entertain us. Some make us laugh. Some make us cry. Some reveal truths and give us the opportunity to examine ourselves so we can choose to bring about change.