The first thing about Pat Riviere-Seel's new book of poetry that catches your attention is its title: The Serial Killer's Daughter. We would sometimes like to forget that those among us who commit incomprehensible acts have parents -- and, often, children -- like the rest of us. The serial killer of the title is Velma Barfield, who was convicted of one murder, admitted to three others, may have been responsible for yet two more and was put to death by the state of North Carolina in 1984. She was the first woman to be executed in the United States after the restoration of the death penalty in 1976. The Serial Killer's Daughter is a remarkable sequence of poems -- sharply observed, unsentimental, yet searching for and often finding dignity in the lives of all its protagonists.
Pat Riviere-Seel and two other local poets -- Carolyn Elkins and Linda Metzner -- will be joining us this coming Friday evening, April 10, beginning at 6:00 PM. We hope you'll join us as we kick off our celebration of National Poetry Month.