Read The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl by Sue Goyette Online


In 2006, a four-year-old Massachusetts girl died from prolonged exposure to a cocktail of drugs that a psychiatrist had prescribed to treat ADHD and bipolar disorder; her parents were convicted of her murder. In The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl, Sue Goyette strives to confront the senselessness of this story, answering logic’s failure to encompass the complexity of mentalIn 2006, a four-year-old Massachusetts girl died from prolonged exposure to a cocktail of drugs that a psychiatrist had prescribed to treat ADHD and bipolar disorder; her parents were convicted of her murder. In The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl, Sue Goyette strives to confront the senselessness of this story, answering logic’s failure to encompass the complexity of mental illness, poverty and child neglect (or that of our torn and tangled social ‘safety net’) with a mythopoetic, sideways use of image and language. Avoiding easy indignation, Goyette portrays the court proceedings’ usual suspects in unusual ways (the judge, the jury, the lawyers, the witnesses and the girl’s troubled parents), evokes the ghost of the girl, personifies poverty as a belligerent bully and offers an unexpected emblem of love and hope in a bear. Like the utterances of a Shakespearean fool, Goyette’s quirky, often counter-logical poems offer a more potent vision of reality than any documentary account, her eulogy for a girl society let down renewing the prospect for empathy and change....

Title : The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781554471461
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 64 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl Reviews

  • Indigo Wayworth
    2019-01-30 06:45

    I think I have a crush on Sue Goyette, guys. I loved this book. I was in tears for most of it. And hearing her speak about it in my class was amazing. God I loved it. Read for ENGL 4471: Contemporary Canadian Poetry

  • Emily
    2019-01-19 06:43

    I loved this poem. It was strange, twisted, beautiful, and extremely evocative. I don't read a whole lot of poetry, so I'm sure I missed a lot of the finer details and nuanced metaphors, but my god is this a wonderful way to retell and examine a painful news story. The language! The turns of phrase! The imagery!! Goyette is so talented at explaining complicated thoughts through (weird and fantastical) poetic language: “The judge wanted to know if the daycare teacher could remember anything about the girl's mother and the teacher changed her voice into preschool scissors and carefully cut around the words she was preparing to say. When she pulled her words out, they remained joined as well as individual silhouettes representing "tired" and "not quite understanding the care the rough gem of childhood required." What she said also resembled a janitor's bucket and mop and everyone on the jury admired how she sloshed gamely into her testimony, how, at first, it seemed she was just spreading the same dirty water around, but when she was done the floor indeed looked cleaner to them."Definitely a departure from the kinds of books I normally read, but so worth it!

  • Sierra
    2019-01-27 09:37

    It takes away from the emotions trying to be conveyed in the book when the author has their head up their ass with how pretentious this was

  • Matthew
    2019-02-11 04:47

    The girl refused to be afraid when she climbedon high things. Her mother shaved the legs of the furnitureand, along with some cough syrup, stewed itwith a few of the girl's father's beer caps. The girl spita whole parade's worth of bicycle bells back at herand pranced around in her diaper. The mother sat on the closet,lit a candle, and located the doctor with binoculars.The doctor, appearing as a bathrobe, urgedthe mother to slap the girl with her slippers then take herpulse. The girl had begun to growl which was upsettingthe cats. The mother upped the dosage of bottle capsand added some baby Aspirin. The doctor suggestedmore conventional medication, the girl sounded bipolarand should be on a leash. What they didn't knowwas that the girl had collected enough stickersto reward the universe. She had a blanket and a bear.She had resolved that when she got up from the floorthat last time, she'd be in another time zonewith better tasting furniture and a door that closed.- pg. 1* * *The girl's ghost was not necessarily a ghostbut more a representative of the girl's curiosity.She moved with an ease that belied her deathand sat between her parents. The fire on her father'scrotch immediately went out and her mother's holdon her water glass lightened. The girl wanted her bear.She wanted to hold the bear to her heart and hearfor herself. Why would she believe anythingthey told her? She could trust the bear. The times it insistedshe was in a forest and would soon come to its edge.She didn't understand why her mouth was filledwith sand and kept emptying it like a shoe.She couldn't taste the window she put her tongue toso tried licking it like a popsicle. It wasn't that she missedher mother and father, she just liked the cooking smellof their clothes and thought she was hungry. Her daycareteacher kept trying to hand her flowers but when shereached out to take them, her teacher busied herselfwith the Kleenex they'd turn into and wouldn't look up.- pg. 15* * *The doctor examined her childhood in the mirror.Her siblings were vacationing in her eyes and so she wasseeing them everywhere. She quickly uncapped a vialand swallowed a moment when she had guessedthe word her father had been looking for. She swallowedthe spoon she had used to feed her mother afterthe surgery then straightened her blazer and added a coupleof inches to her height. The ghost of the girl had beentaunting her all morning. Slithering under chairsand then pointing her wand and casting a spellso she'd turn into a peach. A peach. The doctor scoffedat the idea of turning into a peach. It showed how littleany of these people really knew her. She'd never allowherself to become a peach. She left the bathroomto poverty greedily smucking up even the thoughtof the fruit.- pg. 28* * *Poverty didn't know the first things about eatinga unicorn. It gnawed at its horn but the glittersettled in poverty's cavities which caused painto spark in its ears. It picked up a legbut the delicious smell of green dazed it and povertyfound itself sitting down, scraping green out of the unicorn'shoof. The ghost of the girl showed it how to starta plant by placing the green at the bottom of a glass of water.The plant quickly took root and offered its leaveswhich poverty ate immediately. It was surprised how nourishedpoverty felt after eating those leaves. The ghost of the girlput her hand on the unicorn and the unicorn told herthat unicorns had never been captured in pill form.What the girl had been prescribed was actually an elkand even then not a real elk but a synthetic versionthat probably made her feel worse. Poverty didn't have a beltto undo, it was feeling that plenished.- pg. 36* * *The jury was told that the girl had been foundon the floor beside her parents' bed. Her armswere described as sparrows that had once been inquisitive.They were reminded how sparrows ignore any thoughtof danger to investigate things they find alluring.Members of the jury knew this of sparrows.Many of them had bird feeders in their yardor suction cupped to the windows of their apartments.They were told that the girl's head was biggerthan her body because she'd still been a fledgling.Poverty was having a field day with all the walkof fledglings. Little jelly beans; unexpected disasters.The way a fledgling would lose its balance and fall over.Perfect, poverty said, popping another one in its mouthand crunching.- pg. 54

  • Diane
    2019-02-06 13:00

    Beauty and horror all mixed in one. Sue takes a most difficult subject and transforms it with poetry so we can bear to read it. I believe Sue Goyette is the master of metaphor.

  • Vicki
    2019-02-16 09:59

    Sue Goyette’s The Brief Reincarnation of a Girl has left me breathless and heartbroken by a tragic story uniquely depicted. Goyette’s series of linked poems has also left me awestruck once again at her singular gifts for evoking emotion and revelations through startling juxtapositions of animate and inanimate, real and imagined, quick and dead, soulless and spiritual.Read my complete review here:

  • George Walker
    2019-02-05 12:46

    Haunting and profound Goyette has a mastery of narrative that transforms us. I was both moved and inspired by this poignant story.

  • Beth Paschal
    2019-01-26 12:38

    I dont read a ton of poems let alone long ones..this book is extraordinary!

  • Amanda Brown
    2019-02-12 12:57

    Really weird and kind of excellent.I finished in in a couple hours.