Critical Commentary

on Body Painting:

“If this is the book of the body, its lineaments are those of not only erotic but spiritual desire. Here friends and lovers, mothers and children, intermingle as in the morning light and shadow of a forgotten room, and the source of that light is Hilberry’s very distinctive lyric voice, constantly surprising us with its subdued wit and deep understanding of what it means to be human.”

--B. H. Fairchild

“Mystical, sensuous, and anguished anthems are sung here. Celebrations of being that are both fierce and tender, wry and vulnerable by turns. If Whitman had settled down enough to love a few men and women intensely and over time, he might have recorded those experiences in poems as rich as these, and been as pleased with them as Hilberry’s readers will with these.”

--Gregory Orr