Model Home by Jay Hall Carpenter

Source: GBF
Paperback, 61 pgs.
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Model Home by Jay Hall Carpenter is a collection reflecting on the homes we build, beginning with the landscape of “Common Ground,” in which the inside of a home may not be tenable but the land around it may be familiar and a place to start when building connections.

One of my favorite poems in this collection also speaks to connection, but in a way that kids and the kids within us will understand — the moments of our days. “Like Kids” explores the spontaneity and the curiosity of childhood, allowing us to shrug off adulthood and its responsibilities to run with the kids after the ice cream headache. These moments are fleeting, and as the string of our kites breaks and the kite drifts off into the air, we are made aware of the past and the present all at once. It is hopeful yet saddening.

“Model Home” speaks to the surface seen by others, but opens the doors wide to expose the fissures of family and the imperfections that we house. Carpenter has a deft hand in these poems, and even as many of them rhyme (something I don’t prefer as a reader), I was captivated. His ability to rhyme without distracting me as a reader was a welcomed surprise (though I have read a children’s manuscript he wrote and that rhymed, so I’m not sure why I should be surprised).

You’ll want to take your time touring Jay Hall Carpenter’s Model Home, scrutinizing the decor, exploring the dark corners, sledding down the snowy hills, examining the model home we, as America, pretend to be for the rest of the world. Our home may not be as perfect as we market it to be.

RATING: Cinquain

About the Poet:

Jay Hall Carpenter is an author and artist living in Maryland. His written works include plays, musicals, children’s books, and poetry. For several years he published The ACE Occasionally, a small literary humor magazine. “Dark and Light” is his first collection of poetry.

Carpenter’s career in the visual arts spans forty years and began at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., where he designed 520 of the Cathedral’s sculptural embellishments, including gargoyles and angels. His public sculptures, monuments, smaller bronzes, and drawings can be found throughout the United States and at JayHallCarpenter.com.


  1. Meeghaan Cates says

    I would love to own and read this book

    • Meeghaan, I definitely recommend you buy a copy. Amazon gives me a few cents when you buy from them – helps keep the blog going. If you do get a copy from them or elsewhere, I’d love to hear your thoughts.