to live on the wind
Paperback, 421 Pages
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to live on the wind, is the new memoir by Nanette Rayman Rivera. It is a memoir about the deepest loss – complete lack of a mother’s love; of desire and the way desire and any chance at what anyone would call normal in life, can be swindled and circumvented in such Machiavellian style, one can only wonder if the Fates are knowingly hurting lives. But above all it offers a first hand feeling—as if being in the thick of it—of homelessness and poverty that shouldn’t have been.
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Aug 7, 20105.0 out of 5 stars A Poet's Memoirs, May 15, 2010 By Sona G. Schmidt (Salt Lake City, Utah) A poet writes her memoirs--it doesn't happen enough. Nanette Rayman-Rivera's book, "to live on the wind," weaves its spell on the reader through poetic language, riveting sad events, and a unique Nietzschean reflection seldom seen in memoir. There are moments it can sometimes be mistaken for poetry on its way to a homeless shelter where Ms. Rayman-Rivera unfortunately resided after a previously unusual and painful life. She describes her feelings in the homeless shelter: "I feel like a freak, like I've entered a circus and this is the last minute I won't be the bearded lady or the lady sawed in half. I'm out of my flesh, floating, shuddering on the waves of odor like sawdust. I act like I'm alright, not endlessly eyeing a way out, but really I'm hunting endlessly in my mind for it. I suppose anyone else would search for lost family, but I'm decades past that; I'm here with the... More > elephants, the trumpeting, the noise, at the murky ass of the earth." How often could one ever hear such a description of homelessness? So often have we heard the reporter's voice, or the homeless person's voice through the reporter that such a description as listed above is rare indeed. Where the trope of the suffering artist is concerned, Ms. Rayman-Rivera is the real deal. An unusually traumatic childhood and family life leads her sadly into a life as an exotic dancer, a sort of homeless temp worker, girlfriend of drug dealers, and an actress. Where there is so much self-absorbed, self-reflection of the suffering artist out there, it is refreshing to see someone who has such valid complaints. Normally, this sort of suffering artist is to be found outside of the United States. Ms. Rayman-Rivera's book forces us to look at the many-faceted face of homelessness with her surprising and beautiful face in it. And fate? There is so much create-your-on-destiny literature out there that there are very few true reflections on fated suffering. Ms. Rayman-Rivera's memoirs take this on bravely, and repeatedly. The Greeks were not afraid, and neither is Ms. Rayman-Rivera. Filled with harsh images of rape, physical and emotional abuse, the raw face of the mentally-ill homeless, and the ugly face of envy, it forces us NOT to smell the roses. Strangely, there are counterpoising beautiful images which if one is not careful, can slide off of the page, or are so dense, they earn a second reading. In my opinion, very little memoir language deserves such concentration or a second reading. In short, the quality of Ms. Rayman-Rivera's Pushcart Prize nominations are evident throughout her memoirs. While not an easy read, it is a worthwhile read.< Less
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- Nanette Rayman Rivera (Standard Copyright License)
- Scattered Light Publications
- August 4, 2010
- Perfect-bound Paperback
- Interior Ink
- Black & white
- 1.54 lbs.
- Dimensions (inches)
- 6 wide x 9 tall
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