Here are some reviews and reviewers’ comments about my book Ride Backwards on Dragon: a poet’s journey through Liuhabafa, which was a Finalist for Canada’s Gerald Lampert Memorial Award for Poetry:
Comment from the 2008 Lampert Award judges, Sheri-D Wilson, Richard Stevenson and Lynda Monahan: “Really love the concept of this book – and the execution of the leaping imagery! … wildly inventive, with thoroughly integrated poetic and content. … Nice use of demotic prose, slang, the looser shambling narrative line reminiscent of [Al] Purdy. … often achieves a more highly wrought melodic line too. … A lush book full of alchemy and rich in symbolism. She decodes for us the 66 flowing movements of Liuhebafa, the ancient Taoist practice which reveals a blueprint, as Goldberg says ‘for living a life and transforming one’s inner energies.’”
Excerpt from Robert Martin’s review in The Dalhousie Review: “The poetry in here is great. … The language is direct, colloquial, emotional but hard-headed, energetic and forceful, enormously clever and inventive. … Every poem is full of surprises in language and in point of view… The poems are tough, smart, often funny. What I like best about Goldberg’s poetry is that each poem does something, very vividly.”
Excerpt from Amanda Lim’s review in Canadian Literature: “Together, these poems demonstrate the inextricable connections between physical and psychological development and stress the importance of both balance and self-reflection in one’s life. … The poems deal with multiple issues, including the progression of time, mortality, and an exploration of wandering as both a personal journey and an ethical position of openness and self-discovery. Through wry, often hilarious, observations about her own practices and life journey, and the actions of others, Goldberg emphasizes the necessity of constant questioning and re-evaluation…”
Excerpt from Lia Light’s review in Synergy: “The journey is exotic, and the scenery is great. In some of the more intense poems, images crowd nose to tail to nose across the page: a word-cornucopia treat for the poetry lover or visual thinker. Churning seas, birds and bees, a gun carrying cow-girl, and a released prisoner can all be seen along the way, sharing the poet road: Metaphor. And flitting, flirting, around, throughout them all, are the mythological tigers and dragons that inspire much of liuhebafa, engaged in a high stakes game of tag.”
Excerpt from Carla Atherton’s review in Cahoots: “And what poems! Goldberg’s often unusual use of line breaks and careful choice of words display a thoughtful and precise use of language intent on impacting the reader, pulling them from their constant state of mind into the image and the teachings. Goldberg’s poems burn with the dragon’s fire, soothe with the lotus leaves, liberate by the flying geese. … A valuable resource and a delicious read, Ride Backwards on Dragon takes the reader not only on the poet’s journey, but leads them on their own journey of self-discovery and contemplation.”
Excerpt from Frances Gander’s review in Journal of Martial Arts & Healing: “The evocative moods and images lingered long afterwards like a melody one cannot get free of. I returned again and again to savor its beautiful turmoil.”
Read Friedhelm Tippner’s review on his German-language Liuhebafa blog.