"With intelligence, insouciance, with surprise reversals both clever and wise, Jeanne Larsen gives us WHY WE MAKE GARDENS AND OTHER POEMS. Larsen gardens the English language as if it were seed and soil, flourishing a floral vocabulary not just luscious (although it is) but incisive, too. She chooses, husbands, prunes, and harvests the plenitude of ideas and emotions that gardens provoke, both positive and negative. Here are gardens of betrayal and sex, bitterness and refuge. Larsen puts all that grows inside these beautifully crafted poems, written at the height of her powers."
~ Molly Peacock
"Embodied in the poems of Jeanne Larsen’s Why We Make Gardens are plantings profuse and varied, actual and metaphoric—alive with “the passion of making/the passion of being//unmade.” Gardens, in her sure hands, are vibrantly real—“dust-purple/asters, the monkshood’s last/campanile/orange suns of bittersweet”—and illustrative of our human condition, with “The Garden of Age,” “Garden of Rhapsody,” “Scar Garden,” “Hurricane Gardens,” taking their place next to “The Garden of Roses.” Each poem is acute, oblique, precise and complex: hers is an art to wonder, to savor, to praise." --Carol Moldaw
"The poems in Jeanne Larsen's garden of verses are rich with the scents of blossoms familiar and unfamiliar, with the crunch of dug soil as well as the crackle of dry leaves underfoot, with human hopes and high aspirations as well as our terrible terrible failings. Her poems are both beautiful and wise, a garden in which to wander again and again with wonder and renewal."