#BookReviews #poetry

This week I have some wonderful poetry books for you. They are quick reads, each one may take just an hour but the thoughts and emotions of these awesome poets would touch your heart.

Minus One by Elizabeth Merry

Minus One by Elizabeth Merry is a collection of short poems and haiku that could be read in less than an hour, each poem has a new theme though all are related to life. Some are vague and you have to figure out your own interpretation. Some lovely memories have been recorded in these poems besides the loss and the pain.

‘Seascapes’ transport you to the beach in a joyous mood, ‘Landscapes’ remind you of suffocations and ‘My Girl’ would fill your heart with aching delight. Read them slowly to discern the real meaning of haiku, as some of them whisper emotions through them. My favorite poems are ‘My Girl’ and ‘Yellow Dress.’

Shadows by Anita Dawes

‘Shadows’ by Anita Dawes reflects on the shadows of life, some of which stay behind us while others inspire to drive away sadness and despair. The themes are universal and symbolize love, darkness, light, time, goodness and dreams. Most of the poems are short and focused. I like the clarity of style and thoughts.

‘Color me Red’ brilliantly describes the moods and yearnings of the poet; ‘Broken’ touches upon those moments of disillusionment and desperation when we need an affectionate touch to reassure ourselves and ‘Nine Gates’ is a little ambiguous but I guess the gates refer to our journey of life, with a message of caution at each step.

Wrong Mouse would make you smile. This collection is a nice assortment of challenges that life throws at us and how we handle them. 

Poetry For you, Truths For Me by Tara Aryan

‘Poetry For You, Truths For Me’ by Tara Aryan is profoundly poignant poetry that rides on the waves of raw emotions, revealing how painful adolescent love becomes if the young heart breaks for whatever reasons. Each poem oozes with emotions that would tug at your heart, pull you into the abyss of her agony, make you a part of her “dark, stormy skies.” Her distress reaches its crescendo with ‘In This Cage’ and ‘Let It Rain,’ as the imagery is devastating in those two poems: “chains cling tightly, frozen, welded into my toughened skin.” I wonder how could love cage you, “anxiety siege you,” a “cloak of claustrophobia wrap around” you yet her words seem so plausible!

Most of the poems have been written in blank verse but there is a rhythmic touch in many, a yearning to move on yet the feeling that there could be no happiness, no life without her lost love. Tara’s style is realistic and could be related to any kind of hurt that is unbearable. Despite the lump in my throat, I could feel the wow factor in her style of expression, so pure, so honest and candid. A big hug for the poet for keeping her head high at the brink of drowning in deep seas of sorrow and pouring the grief into poetry. Bravo!

Poems in this collection mature as the poet enters the realms of understanding and learns to handle life. Wisdom dawns, rage steps in, Tara’s tone changes and a ray of hope shimmers in the later poems. ‘Liar, Liar’ is powerful in this context and lays bare some more truths. Some of the poems would haunt you, touch you deeply and you might need a face tissue while reading. I consider myself emotionally resilient but I had to put my kindle down to balance my emotions.

This one gets 5 shimmering stars.

Thank you.

Balroop Singh.

If you like poetry,  check my latest book: Magical Whispers

You can click here for more poetry.

Marbles

Ah! The music of marbles
All day we played
All night we heard
New tunes created by dreams.

Ah! The colors that charmed
The fights we won
The flights we took
To possess our favorite marbles!

Wow! The pride of winning
Each one, a treasure
The trophies of innocent joys
Little pleasures of childhood.

Some memories mesmerize
Fill our heart with delight
Moments that passed by
Entwining us in the web of life.

Marbles melt into maelstrom of life
As time drapes its talons around us.
© Balroop Singh

This poem was inspired from Annika Perry’s post. Thank you so much dear friend for stirring sweet memories.

 You can click here for more poetry.

If you like poetry,  check my latest book: Magical Whispers

#BookReviews: Tidal Falls & I’d Rather Be Growing Grapes

Tidal Falls by Jacquie Biggar

Tidal Falls by Jacquie Biggar is more than just wounded hearts or oppressive marriage. It has a well-defined plot that keeps you hooked with the ups and downs of life and some hard decisions that change the course of life for Sara as well as Nick. The story moves at a steady pace and hinges on relationships and emotions. It celebrates friendships and moments of happiness despite the initial hurts. A thread of positivity links all the characters except Tom.

Sara flees her home and takes her daughter Jess along with her. She knows her filthy rich husband who is a well-connected lawyer would hunt her down but she meets happiness in the form of some wonderful friends. How long would she enjoy this freedom? Can she trust Nick? Keep guessing till the end! 

The characters have been crafted with a broader stroke, giving immense confidence and independence to women. Sara’s agony and skepticism could reach my heart; Nick’s open-minded approach to life is commendable and the friendship worth emulating. Realistic as well as challenging situations add an element of thrill to this book.

I gave it five stars.

****

I’d Rather Be Growing Grapes by Jan Romes

I was allured by the name of this book and had no idea what it is about. ‘I’d Rather Be Growing Grapes’ has a weird plot but it has been handled in a brilliant manner, with the right kind of emotions. A fun read, without a dull moment, it keeps you enthralled till the last page. When you place twenty-one young women around a bachelor, there are inevitable chances of fireworks and cat-fights! Will Beau Reinholt find his soul mate?

In her light-hearted style of writing, Jan Romes introduces you to the “she devils” who had signed up for the three-week event called “Pick Me,” each one vying to win the most eligible bachelor, picking at each other, competing to seek attention; their bickering and brawls are hilarious. Egos are hurt, curses are thrown at Beau for not choosing the one who is most eager; Roxanne calls “Pick Me” the stupidest thing ever, organized for money, not love. Tina leaves with a positive comment while Tamara makes sarcastic remarks.

Some sterling expressions that won my heart: “They came at her from all sides, ready to rip into her flesh until they hit bone.” 

“Spirals of ecstasy swirled through her and blasts of warmth detonated below her belly.”

“A bunch of hens trying to peck each other’s eyes out.”Despite the efforts of some of the girls daring to reveal all, Romes keeps the narrative decent and therefore I would like to give her an extra star for that. A well-crafted, charming story, this book flows well and I enjoyed reading it.

This fun book gets five shimmering stars.

Thank you.

-Balroop Singh.

The Most Memorable Words Anyone Said To Me…

This post is inspired from Pragalbha’s question at Infinite Living
“What are the most memorable compliments given to you?” (Thank you Pragalbha and Debby at ThoughtSmith for the inspiration.) 

Memorable words? We often forget the good ones, as they are rare. But we yearn for them. I learned the power of words very early in life. I knew they could bore unseen holes in our heart, knifing deeper hurts that keep festering.

I learned to live with them; also hurl some back at those who deserved them. Then I met some loving persons, with divine streaks. I discovered the path to positivity. My confidence doubled. I stopped paying attention to judgmental people, I steered away from toxic persons around me and decided to change my perception.

Then I learned forgiveness. It was not easy; I had to pass through the cauldron of each negative thought, each unseemly word that refused to quit the crevices of my mind. Forgiveness fairy would visit me every night to caress my hair. She taught me how a kind word sends vibes of love, if we are perceptive, if we know how love permeates and proliferates with this little gesture.

She told me: We give a little kindness when we pay attention. We give a little hope when we listen patiently.We give respect by communicating honestly. We give a gentle message with our tender touch.

I understood the power of touch when one of my colleagues said:
“When you hold hands while talking, it seems you are really listening to me. I like it so much.”
Those words stayed with me.

“You have time for everyone,” another one said. The words warmed my heart.
Who doesn’t know the paucity of time specially when you are young, you know somebody is waiting at home and rushing becomes your second nature; when you are juggling with so many roles: A home-maker, a wife, a mother, a teacher, a mentor, a colleague and a friend.

Patient listening and responding with whatever kind words I could manage became my habit.

But the best compliment that I received indirectly from a friend is: “You have to peep into her heart to know her.”
She was asked how could she be friendly with me!

Frowned at by most of my colleagues for keeping distance from them, I was considered to be “an arrogant” but only few who tried to come closer, understood the walls that I had erected around me to keep the arrows of words away.

An excerpt from one of my earlier poems:

 Words silence; they take you into deeper dumps
Words soften; they can change your outlook.
Words hurt; they can cause irreparable damage
Words guide; they give us the power to introspect.
© Balroop Singh

If you like poetry, check my latest book: Magical Whispers

Dreams #PoetryChallenge #Tanka

Theme-based poetry kicks my muse hard and when the theme happens to be “Dreams,” she rides on the waves, eager to explore each one. I tried to restrict her to one Tanka but another one just flowed. She has more in her pockets but I have reserved them for my next book.

A box full of dreams
She carries it with poise
Some just flutter away
Catching them is unrealistic
What is the fun of cluttering?

***

She buried her dreams
In the valley of despair
The deluge of tears
Drowned the irresistible
Empty-hearted, she sits forlorn.
© Balroop Singh

***

Inspired from Colleen M. Chesebro’s #ThemePrompt at wordcraftpoetry.com

Thank you.

You can click here for more poetry.

Check my latest book: Magical Whispers

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