Tagged: Ruth Ellen Kocher

REVIEW: Ending in Planes by Ruth Ellen Kocher



By Whitney Kerutis

I read Ending In Planes with the pounding fists of an interrogating child as Ruth Ellen Kocher’s lines morph themselves into the finger that points and declares, “It is that!” before pulling off and re-aiming. The imagery and metaphors attempting to reinterpret themselves in order to name the most combustible qualities of human entanglements.


These entanglements questioned and situated between an “I” and “you” throughout the collection of poems, often identify through images of landscapes and domestic trucs:


In these metaphors and tangible frames, the reader begins to see the encountering of people as construction, seasonal, uprooted only to be replanted. The physicality of the encounter located and yet evading detection, or perhaps evading settlement. In this act of projection, the “I” feels emboldened, raising the brow, leaning inwards, and peeling… off, what? The self-projection, the “you’s” outer layer, the act of domestication, of power dynamics, of the destruction of touch, love and loss and movement…rek3Let us not forget, the lyric that entwines itself through the line, the page, the book. The lyric, a driving force from one image to the next, coming to an end before lifting itself up and out once more. I felt my mind contracting and releasing in the poetry’s music, the way one explores the spine’s range:


In the space between the lines, the blank space of the page, I find the finger once more pointing outward, accusing me of my own violence, of my own shifting weight.


Ending In Planes is a collection of poetry that aims and re-aims; a book of language pushing against language and then through it. Winner of the 2013 Noemi Press Poetry Award, Ruth Ellen Kocher has created a book of multiple landscapes for language to expand outward.

Available from Noemi Press: $ 15.00

Whitney Kerutis lives in Denver, Colorado and is working on her MFA in Creative Writing for poetry at The University of Colorado Boulder.