In the Garden of Luxembourg by Rosina Neginsky
In her collection of poems, In the Garden of Luxembourg, which is written in both English and French, poet Rosina Neginsky constructs beautifully lyrical poems that reveal concepts and images that both engross and captivate the reader. Through her writing, she creates a world where love and death coexist, as if they were a couple, dancing together through the wind. By inputting elements of magical realism, where both grey wolves and mermaids can be found among her lines, the poet does a good job of transporting the reader to another realm. There are poems that are inspired by photographs and paintings, while others are inspired by literary images. Nevertheless, Neginsky goes further than these muses, taking her words to a new plane of existence. Many of the pieces refer to the duplicity that can exist not only in nature, but through humankind itself. The structured prose here evaluates what it means to be alive, and how we can strengthen ourselves, and our relationships with others.
Neginsky is clearly interested in the idea of parallelism, which is obvious from the way she displays her poems in two languages side by side, allowing readers to choose which language to read her work in, if they happen to be fluent in both. While the poems do not often vary in form, the skill of creating such profound work in two languages is a feat in and of itself. The collection is both cohesive and immersive, the themes ever-present and related throughout all of the poems that have been included here. This is the kind of book that holds great meaning, the poet succeeding at causing the reader to think through the lines of the work she’s so carefully paired together.