The beauty of words: Poetry recommendations

Poetry has always been one of my favourite genres when it comes to the written word and yet I’ve never really reviewed any of them on my blog! Most of the poetry I read are online, so I rarely document them on goodreads, but recently I’ve been purchasing poetry books because I’ve really been in the mood to pick up more poetry. My love for poetry comes from my mother, just like my love for books in general. If you visit my parents’ house you’ll find that majority of the books on her bookshelf are poetry books and she reads them often.

One thing I’ve learned in all the years of reading poetry, and perhaps why I haven’t reviewed them, is that poetry is hard to review. Its emotion, feelings and it relies on the reader connecting to the words on a deep and personal level. So reviewing it is no easy task and you can’t exactly say what the poetry is about. However, I think it’s important that I highlight some of the poetry I’ve been reading and just give my readers a vague, but general idea of what I thought about it and hopefully inspire some readers to pick up some of the poetry books I have enjoyed. So here are the books I’ve picked up in the last two months:

Shall I Be a Poet instead? by Lianne Bernardo

One of my friends (book blogger at Eclectic Tales) has taken the leap and self-published her collection of poetry. During multiple lines of communication that we have (online, texting, letter writing) she has spoken of her love for poetry, that she writes her own and want to publish it so when she informed me that it’s available, I ordered it immediately.

I read it the same day I received the book, in one single sitting and I will say that I was pleasantly surprised. Her writing is beautiful and touching. Most of the poems are short, but they have lots of emotion to them.

The poems I loved the most are: Life support, Potholes, Starting Over, Shall I be a Poet Instead, Glass Sky, Autumn, and Words

I’m naming the poems for Lianne’s sake as I know she’d love to know which ones I enjoyed the most, but for you as a reader it’s probably useless information, so here is the title poem for your enjoyment, and I hope she doesn’t mind me sharing it:


Shall I be a Poet Instead?

Shall I be a poet instead?

For it is the only way to express, it seems,

what is bottled up in

the storage boxes of my mind,

the refracted visages of my heart.

To write down the words

lest they crumble into dust;

to capture the fleeting moments

before they drift away, gone forever.

With these words I pin my dreams,

those lofty clouds that sail

across boundless skies day in, day out

before my very eyes.

Shall I be a poet instead?

Rest in the Mourning by R.H.Sin

I have always enjoyed r.h.sin’s poetry and I don’t know what took me so long to actually start collecting his poetry books. When I had to select which collection to buy, the title Rest in the Mourning stood out to me and I’m so glad that I picked it up. The writing was so beautiful and so poignant. The one poem that stood out to me were the one titled peace maintained:

No Matter the Wreckage by Sarah Kay

I heard of this poetry collection from Hannah who mentioned that it was one of her favourite poetry reads of the year. And I was curious, so I ordered it online.  Sarah’s poetry is a bit different to the ones I’m used to reading.  She uses a lot of metaphors and some of the poems I had to read twice to figure out what she was talking about or meant.

Hate me for saying this, but there’s a trend in the poetry community of late that focuses a lot on simple, yet effective poetry. Which I love and enjoy, but I love and enjoyed dissecting Sarah’s poetry by reading them over and over again. It was great!

One of the poems that stood out where this one, and I think a lot of people have heard this one before, particularly this line:

Because there’s nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, no matter how many times it’s swept away.

Root by Melissa Tripp

I came across this collection when one of the people I follow on twitter retweeted the author’s tweet that her book is free for the day and I got it. I even encouraged my readers to get in on the deal as well when she made her book available for free a few weeks after that. At that time I’ve read it already and could attest to the fact that it was an enjoyable read. I’m glad I read it!

Here are some of my favourite lines that I’ve highlighted:

Doing things that make you feel good doesn’t make pain any less real. It just makes dwelling on it less of a priority.

The only way to describe my ambiguous past is to recall feeling like things never stood still. I was hurting more than I was learning. I was falling faster than I was climbing…

You’ll die a thousand times before your heart fails. But, you’ll have choices: let it consume you, or use it to make a masterpiece.

Do you enjoy poetry? Have you read any of these books?