University of New Mexico Press, 2015.
Samuel Green, Inaugural Poet Laureate of Washington state, says of Crossing Over:
“In bridge-engineering lingo,” the note to one of these poems tells us, “the ‘dead load’ is the weight of the bridge itself. The ‘live load’ is the weight of traffic crossing the bridge,” and this is a poet obsessed with bridges and crossings, as the title of the collection implies: chaos to order; grief to acceptance; solitude to connection; confusion to understanding; life to death; past to present; dark to light—themes as old as poetry. Quoting Wilder, she says, “the bridge is love.” Perhaps. But love as a noun is just the ‘dead load.’ It’s love supported by the imagination that becomes the ‘live load’ here, fully aware that the weight could be too much, but that the crossing has to be made—and not just once, but again and again, as in the compulsive encounters with a dead sister’s probable suicide. This is not a first book of poems by a beginner, but the solid structure of an accomplished writer who has lived out her apprenticeship, a feet-on-the-ground poet walking in pedestrian lane of bridge after bridge, feeling every nuance of every tremble.”
Kathleen Flenniken, 2012-2014 Washington State Poet Laureate, says of Crossing Over:
“Memory is a bridge, poet Priscilla Long reminds us in this shimmering, elegantly structured collection: these poems lead back to the bright sources of longing and grief, guided by Long’s excellent and playful ear, passion for language, and spine-tingling insights. Crossing Over interlaces elegies—including a gorgeous series for a lost sister—with remembered love, human tragedy, dreamy sensation, moody northwestern landscapes, and bridges—real and metaphorical. The joy of creation leavens every poem. I have long anticipated this book: it was so worth the wait.”