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Container Gardening, Poems by Ellen Steinbaum

“What is here at this moment”: these are the things that fall under Ellen Steinbaum’s contemplation in Container Gardening. Refusing to turn away from each moment, Steinbaum’s lyrics powerfully evoke their subjects in taut, carefully crafted lines.

Sample Poems by Ellen Steinbaum

“Beneath the impeccably controlled surfaces of these poems lies the hidden knowledge of dangers past and to come. Container Gardening gives us illuminating glimpses of a life bravely lived. It is a deeply felt and moving book.”—Linda Pastan

“Ellen Steinbaum is a poet of muted grief and quiet acceptance. And hope. In Container Gardening the losses we suffer—private, public, political, natural—are universal. But she knows, with wry certainty, that ‘what is broken can / (never) / be repaired / the pieces can / (not) / be put back.’ Definitely one or the other. Steinbaum’s sigh of resignation and breath of hope are both genuine. The contained garden of her poems becomes a conscious strategy to deal with all those—all our—losses. I was moved by Ellen Steinbaum’s first book and eager for a second. I haven’t been disappointed.”—Lloyd Schwartz

Ellen Steinbaum is the author of the poetry collection, Afterwords, and a one-woman play, CenterPiece. She writes a literary column for The Boston Globe. Originally from Wilmington, Delaware, she now lives in Boston. Her work can be seen at

ISBN: 978-1934999301, 92 pages

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