Rapture of Matter
Frankie Paino was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1960. She holds a B.A. in English from Baldwin-Wallace College and an M.F.A. in creative writing from Vermont College. Her first book of poetry,The Rapture of Matter, was published by Cleveland State University Poetry Center in 1991. Her work has appeared in many magazines and journals including The American Voice, Antioch Review,Crazyhorse, Indiana Review, Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, and Quarterly West. She has won a number of awards including the Missouri Review’s Tom McAfee Discovery Feature, a Pushcart Prize, and the 1992 Cleveland Arts Prize for poetry.
“The rapture in this superb first book is initially in the engagement with and attention to detail, a sense of care for the art that then allows Paino’ s elegiac vision to achieve an elevating rapture that overcomes the deaths, the losses, the betrayals she faces. It is a vision based on a wondrous music, a mature voice that struggles passionately for dignity in the here and now. ‘Some things are worth risking everything for,’ she says in one poem, and the whole book itself is the proof of that statement. Finishing it, I think of the great Rilke, how he wrote to the young poet: ‘no experience has been too slight, and the least incident unfolds like a destiny . . . guided by an infinitely tender hand.’” –Richard Jackson
“It’s almost impossible, reading these poems, to believe they are the ingredients of a first book. So wise, so full of experience and concrete details, they hook us, as few early poems do, into sitting up half the night, rereading. There’s no doubt in my mind that Paino is already one of America’s best poets.” –Paula Rankin
Cleveland State University Poetry Center
Paino, Frankie, "Rapture of Matter" (1991). CSU Poetry Center Books. 120.