“Unlike so many poets who remain balkanized within the paradigms of their belief models, the reader gets the sense that Losse welcomes all comers, that her model is fully engage anything the cosmos seems willing to send her way.  The poet is above all things, a citizen of the universe, and Helen Losse’s delicate renditions of this awareness emphasizes their own quiet intensity in the shared sense of being.”

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Review by Paul Corman-Roberts


“The poems in Seriously Dangerous are illuminated by their sense of place, by Losse’s respect for and deference to nature and the natural, and by the variety, mystery, and history of the American South. These are poems that beckon to a reader like a family member or an old friend; you will find yourself reading them again and again. “

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review by Addy McCollough


“Poetry lovers will surely delight in Seriously Dangerous, Helen Losse’s latest collection of deftly sculpted lyric poems. Throughout this volume of 47 mostly short works, Losse reveals a sensibility that is at once intensely spiritual and concrete. Rooted in the natural world and often exhibiting abundant painterly detail, Losse’s poems are eloquent statements about life in the body—both individual and the collective. Life in its myriad private and public scenarios undergoes a thorough exploration, which the poet expresses with economical, sometimes deadpan, frankness as in the mordant poem, “Spin, Spin, Spin”:

People with crosses have
various purposes.
We know that most are dangerous,
except for the chosen few
God actually likes.


“To read Helen Losse’s poems is to savor an eloquent voice. Nowhere is this voice more contemplative than in “Where Light is Going”:

It would be easier to speak as others believe,
not to feel the ocean’s intentions nor to sense
the pull of the moon. Grace abounds in ocean,
in flotsam, in rich sea foam, floats in earth’s
swirling dust . . . .

Ultimately, Seriously Dangerous embodies mindfulness of the connectedness of all things and of the urgency for each of us to be open to what is without forgetting what has been.”

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review by Maria Garcia Rouphail


“In the titular poem, “Seriously Dangerous,” Losse drives readers to the Deep South’s memories of racial injustice as the poem references Jesus’s crown of thorns (“the prick of a thorn”) and baptism in the last line, “nor wash us clean, till truth bleeds.” Losse is at her best when she employs specific images such as “old dryers bob beside alligators.” The cover art for the book is the image of a burning cross, a central motif that particularly comes alive in the line “Seriously dangerous,/ the cross without a savior.”

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review by Alice Osborne


“…in the poetry of Helen Losse, I catch the same echoes of hope and calls for patience, long-suffering, and endurance as Martin Luther King, Jr.’s writings on the subject of the opposition that he frequently experienced on his journey to civil rights. On the subject of hope, King said: ‘We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.””

“It is fitting that many of her poems echo the same strains of optimism and admonitions to better ourselves even in the midst of our trials, and to persevere. After all, she wrote her Master’s thesis on the redemptive value of unmerited suffering in the life and works of Martin Luther King, Jr. at Wake Forest University. In many regards, one could say that Seriously Dangerous is an opus to her thesis.”

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review by Michael Parker


“Losse’s poetry contains a spiritual undercurrent. Even the title poem “Seriously Dangerous,” alluding to the South’s dark not-so-distant past, centers around that danger: “the cross without a savior” that “cannot burn away filth & dross, / nor wash us clean. . . .” Her poem “Queen Anne’s Lace, ” beginning with an observation of the lacy late-summer wild flowers, circles around from historical allusion to English royalty to “Saint Anne, who. . . bore Mary, the Mother of God.” The expression of the spiritual in these poems, though, seems to emerge not in a formal way but through nature, as she notes that “Grace abound in the ocean” (“Where Light Is Going”) and observes three deer, in “The First Night of Winter” that pause within sight to “preach a sermon without words.”

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Nancy Posey


“Seriously Dangerous, Helen Losse’s latest book of poetry, is an excellent read. From the first poem, “Danger of Pretense,” to the last, “Deep Purple Shadow,” Losse envelops the reader in a thicket of imagery from the natural world. But this is not your grandmother’s “nature” poetry, this is the environment not just as image but as metaphor, symbol, idea.”

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J. B. Hogan


Helen Losse’s newest collection of poems are so Seriously Dangerous that the reader might end up writing poetry also. These poems are contagiously shared, and as all poetry is, dangerous. The collection is the work of a seasoned poet, one who has lived into her experiences and interpreted what she has found there. Lines are succinct, telling us only what we can bear to take in, yet giving us a hint that what is between these lines call to us to learn, in order to maintain our sanity in a lost world.

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Jean Rodenbaugh


“Poetry will forever be a combination of technique and insight.  Seriously Dangerous is Chet Atkins meeting The Apostle Paul. ”


Carter Monroe


“Helen Losse brings the power of nature right to your doorstep in her latest book, Seriously Dangerous, even if you live in the city. Reading these poems I was carried back to the woodlands and streams of my childhood in a small town in South Carolina where woods, streams, and pastures were part of the landscape of who you were.”

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Priscilla A. Campbell