Category: Poetry Reviews

A review of That Strapless Bra in Heaven by Sarah Sarai

Many of Sarai’s lines have the declarative emphasis of aphorisms. “Easier to make an enemy than beef Wellington” begins the poem, “Call Me Sheena.” “Tenderness isn’t necessary but there it is / like a chemical we write to Congress about,” she writes in “Not Simple Is Joy nor Cosmology.” “Wedding planners are a food group,” she writes in “A Scarlet Moss,” “So is roast beef.”

A review of The Grace of Distance by Matthew Thorburn

The Grace of Distance  has an immediate appeal with a parabola of terse phrases and expressions turning into maxims. The poems of the first section have a wider spectrum of portraying the human emotions, drawing upon the spiritual wanderings through the labyrinths of one’s mind or hint of rebirth or reincarnation of human souls, as propounded by Lord Buddha.

A review of Asylum Garden: after Van Gogh by Alan Catlin

As Catlin himself notes, Asylum Garden “is a book about seeing: what we see and how we see it.” Like his previous volumes, Wild Beauty and American Odyssey, Catlin’s poems here are inspired by artists and photographers. Blue Velvet and Hollyweird, two other recent collections, similarly find inspiration in grade B movies.

A review of Recipe for Garum by Robert Letters

The poems in this section express deep feelings for nature as is characteristic of the genre. The sensory details and expressive language in this section are enhanced with striking imagery and in some of them, deep emotions.
Recipe for Garum is an unusual book: very well written and entertaining. Reading it is a quiet pleasure.

A review of Unfinished Child by Lindsey Warren

Put the idea of reading this book of poetry cover to cover to bed. For the reader to have control over direction but not the journey’s destination makes Lindsey Warren’s inventive debut collection, Unfinished Child, read like real life. But moving through the poems also parallels a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book.

A review of The Espionage Act by Jennifer Maiden

This is work that not only provides a different kind of news — engaging with issues like free speech, democracy, aesthetics and ethics – a continual source of interest for Maiden and one she explores with the full weight of her poetic talent, but also allows the reader to see things from a different, and at times, magic realism perspective.