Lesléa Newman captures both the horrors and sentiments surrounding the murder of Matthew Shepard, a gay twenty one year old student at the University of Wyoming. In this book of poems, readers will experience the raw emotion felt by the people personally affected by the infamous 1998 hate crime. It also offers the reader new perspective in poems narrated by the fence he was tied to, and even the deer that stood with Matthew on the night the crime was committed. For readers too young to remember the shock and impact of this event, this book is the perfect tool to educate oneself. It brings the reader back to the early days of October, 1998, in Laramie, Wyoming; where they will witness a moment in our country’s history that should never be forgotten.
October Mourning by Lesléa Newman is a gift to our generation. Despite it’s small size and dark subject matter, it ingeniously shows us with incredible accuracy the emotions felt by those that witnessed the murder of Matthew Shepard. It helps us to relive, or to live for the first time, the horrible crime that affected so many people. This masterful book of poems is filled with lessons for all of us to learn from. It captures you and makes you really think about the world we live in and how we can try to change it.