‘Marigold and Rose’ by Louise Gluck – Precocious Twins Nearly One Year Old


‘Marigold and Rose’ by Louise Gluck   (2022) – 52 pages


This novella is a quick, quick little read that I thoroughly enjoyed. It is wry and humorous, yet profound.

Although ‘Marigold and Rose’ is prose and not poetry, it does have the quality of poetry in that every word counts. There are no throwaway words or sentences here.

‘Marigold and Rose’ is a clever little book written from the young twins’ point of view.

The nearly one year old twins Marigold and Rose are always going to be close, and they will always get in each other’s way. They already bumped against each other many times while still in their mother’s stomach.

Little Rose makes this astute observation about her twin sister Marigold: “What an odd little thing she is, Rose thought. All her energy is in her head.”

Everyone understood that Marigold lived in her head and Rose lived in the world. Well and good, Rose thought.”

Rose is the life of the party type while Marigold is more cerebral, although they probably don’t know the word “cerebral” yet.

Even before the age of one, the girls are beginning to figure out their ties with each other, their differences, and their bonds with the mother and the father.

She (Marigold) is the thinking one, Mother said. Rose was the everything else one. But everything else doesn’t count, Rose thought. And Marigold thought everything else was everything. Because you couldn’t see thinking.”

For a poet like Louise Gluck, winning the Nobel Prize is not enough. Even the readers of the world read so little poetry today, so that the poet will remain quite unknown even after they have won the Nobel Prize. That is why it is a rather sharp move by Louise Gluck to have now written this novella. ‘Marigold and Rose’ will make a near perfect Christmas gift for the literary-minded like Marigold. This is a courageous original work.

‘Marigold and Rose’ makes me want to go further into the poetry of Louise Gluck.


Grade:     A



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