Glorious Veils of Diane
Rainie Oet’s Glorious Veils of Diane is a book unlike any other. Taking place in five parts, the book chronicle’s the titular character’s metamorphosis from the point of view of herself and those around her. The book begins with a premise: “On January 14th, 1999, Diane disappeared.” The poems that follow jump through time; each poem has a date underneath the title to situate the reader within specific moments. The poems are not listed chronologically, but rather thematically, which allows the reader to experience Diane’s life in relation to the chapters of her life. In “Blood Diary (Diane): March 13, 1993” Oet writes: “Am I dreaming? I think ‘fire.’/ And the house bursts into flames.” Then, later in the same section, a poem with the same title has the lines: “Am I dreaming? I think ‘fire.’/ And nothing happens.” The facets of Diane, of her power and powerlessness over the environment surrounding her, over herself, over the perception that others have of her, is the central focus of Glorious Veils of Diane.
All of the poems are titled similarly: either BLOOD or Blood Diary with the character whose diary it is in parentheses. Often it is the Mother, or the Girl Next Door. Often it is Diane herself. This lends a feeling of surreality to the work, spiderweb threads that connect the characters through time and space. All of the poems are about Diane, that elusive character who is both real and unreal, just as she is both powerful and powerless. In “Blood Diary (Diane): December 9, 2003 Oet writes: “I miss my selves, first selves- we believed/ we’d be me forever.” Diane is here, Diane is missing. Diane is the mystery heartbeat to her own glorious veils.
Glorious Veils of Diane is a unique work of art, one that questions and pulls and reveals the blood that lies underneath life itself. Pick up your copy today.
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