Ode to Dymphna is a collection of poems that ranges from love of animals to love of friends, from lovers and grief to mortality and mental illness.
It touches on everything: chickens, driving cars, cats, addiction, public assistance and trying not to pop balloons.
Robins takes us on different journeys until she comes to her realization that no one is as normal as they might seem.
In the end, she brings us back to faith.
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[A] real feast for thought and, at times, a real punch in the gut.
Nina ponders important questions, like bacterial belief systems, and shares more anecdotes captured through the lens of her magnificent wit and humor.
This might just be her best work yet!
Michael A. CarrolL
In this collection, the poet comes into her full power.
Biography flaring through into universal message. Meaning. Light. Incandescent and gritty.
Not since finding [Sylvia] Plath at 17 have I felt this kinship. But more hope here, more humility and love.
I'm grateful for these poems. Rest in peace, hopelessness.
E. K. Gordon
The poems in Ode to Dymphna weave and jolt through the human condition —
what it means to inhabit a human body from its cellular to its intricate and holy machinations. They are raw and determined. They are haunting, and in some cases, haunted. They are intentional. They interrogate. They remember. They clap back.
In this collection, resilience resonates through the familiar, the mundane, the unpleasant, and the necessary.
In her careful eye for image, Belen captures hard truths: mortality is inevitable, these poems teach us, and grief is inevitable, but it is also the warmth of the human condition, in all of its messiness, that sustains us.