Reviews for:
Crazy Jane, Poems



Review by Doris Barkin,
American Book Review--Vol 30, Issue 2.

Pat Falk is lying to us when she declares, “If I never write again I will be happy.”  In “Blue Night,” she claims, I would rather sleep than write.”  She lies to us and lies to herself, but this is not mendacity or trickery or manipulation.  Quite the contrary, Falk’s searingly honest, painful, often heartbreaking collection of poems Crazy Jane attests that Falk must write:  if the act does not make her happy, at least it works towards healing her. 

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Review by Moira Richards, Poets’ Quarterly, Issue 4 - Winter 2011

I first encountered Crazy Jane in Pat Falk’s memoir/treatise on poetics, It Happens As We Speak, in which she reveals that she shares the middle name, Jane, and a certain amount of history with a young woman who died an horrific and bloody abortion-related death. She writes there too, that

          Jane has been the identity I’ve denied, the spirit buried, the vision and power

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Review by Gayl Teller, Hofstra University

Pat Falk’s poems implicitly ask, how does one find center, stability, sanity and love? The urgency behind the processing of one’s personal autonomy ironically means addressing the “Crazy Janes” within, the voices one has been conditioned into sensing as one’s own, voices of hungers, “twisted instincts,” hurts, frustrations, unrealized abilities, and marcissistic voices seeking cameras to assuage the suffering: “am I so much the child/that I believe whatever blazes, dazzles,/is so uterly my own—that I deny my own/perception..?”

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Review By David Wolach --Wheelhouse Magazine, December 2007

Falk’s work seamlessly bridges poetic landscapes often thought at odds: free
verse and narrative, the confessional and the sociopolitical, the interrogative
sensibility of the avant-gardist and the musical ear of the of the lyricist. Crazy
Jane sings to us while simultaneously disrupting the fl ow; the poems…manage
to dislodge us from complacency, not through an outer violence, but through
a quiet, though raging, inner sense of desperation. Such urgency is difficult to
capture, and Falk does so. A truly unique and honest voice in American poetry.