I share only few posts at Facebook and I happened to share this one. I am amazed at the response from my old friends and students who still remember me fondly. Many thanks to James, an accomplished author and a wonderful blogger friend for giving me this opportunity to show my achievements. Please hop on to James’ blog to read the full interview, where I also share excerpts from my latest book – ‘Moments We Love.’
I am pleased to share this glowing review of my poetry by James J. Cudney (the creator of Braxton Campus Mysteries) while I prepare to launch ‘Moments We Love,’ my new poetry book next week.
I have never come across a more comprehensive analysis of my poetry. This review of my latest poetry book ‘Timeless Echoes’ at insaneowl.com by Fiza Pathan has enlightened me about my own poems! I am amazed at her interpretations and had to go back to those poems to understand them anew after reading her thoughts about them. I have realized how vague thoughts speak differently to readers, refreshing their own memories!
‘My First Love’ is one such abstract poem, where my love for books is expressed through metaphors but has been construed differently. I am delighted to note that my poetry has been called “therapeutic,” “a soothing balm to the spirit of a poetry lover.”
Though Fiza has copyrighted her review, I take this liberty to quote her:
“These poems are tender, soothing and beautiful, and a must read for all of us poetry lovers stuck on our old memories and times not forgotten. I really think Balroop should go in for poetry therapy because her poems really are like the soothing touch of a grandmother’s gentle hand on a fevered brow.”
Thank you so much Fiza, for your critique. We may be sitting at the extreme corners of the globe but words bind us in a strange bond.
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The NEA reports an increased interest in poetry.
I would like to share these poetry books with you, which touched me deeply:
Stranger Paths: The Magic in the Madness Poetry Collection by R.J. Zarkani speaks eloquently about war-torn Iraq and the eternal emotional bruises that a little girl carried within her, wondering why her father told her to get inside when she wanted to see the “fireworks making a day out of night,” – a child’s perspective about war.
All the pearls in this book belong to the same string that broke and scattered. Zarkani’s yearning to meet the child who “swallowed the smoke” and got lost in the explosions didn’t wane years after she migrated to an alien land, in search of peace and freedom. Roots pull her; stars and the clouds appear familiar but there is a strange disconnect that seems inexplicable, as she was told “you don’t look like a terrorist!”
Superb imagery that R.J. uses blends in her reflections about “creatures crawled out of her book,” a book that calls her, visions that haunt her, images of the past linger, fairies that lived on her kitchen sink still sing; memories stand before her, trying to sweep her away into the world she still loves… ‘shoes filled with mud’ seem dearer… ‘rain in the desert’ – a childhood memory returns as Raghad writes the poignant story of the moments she treasures.
Journey to the Rainbow’s End: A Drag Queen’s Odyssey by Forrest Stepnowski is a brilliant anthology of blank verse and a short story that dwells on the hope of being accepted the way one is… “To be my own star.” It gives voice to all those persons of LGBTQ community, who slip into the abyss of self-loathing because of orthodox, judgmental society that spews hatred against them, declaring them “gay,” “immoral” and “abnormal.”
Each poem in this collection makes a poignant appeal to the society to understand the pain and ridicule that they have to undergo because of the apathetic attitude of the people around them, who push them into the closet, compelling them to face “The silent horror of being” and are forced to snub “the darkest secrets” but who crave for love to lead a normal life.
This is a distressing journey of emotional upheavals, a clarion call to find their own voice and light by breaking free from the shackles that threaten to suffocate them, by accepting that strength lies within. This book must be read by everybody as it contains profound words for those who look down upon other human beings.
‘Open a New Door’ by Kim Blades and Robbie Cheadle is a collection of poems, inspired from life in Africa and people who make it good, bad or ugly. All aspects are portrayed in a plausible manner.
Both Kim and Robbie have a similar style of writing blank verse, some of the themes too are identical. Realism is the hallmark of their poetry, as they talk about life and people in clear words; imagination takes a back seat. Deeply moved by poverty around her, Robbie has highlighted it in many poems. If ‘The Boys under the Bridge’ brings out the plight of the homeless youth, The Silver Lining underlines the uplifting spirits of a youngster carrying a load of recyclables with abandon, The Beggar’s Child mocks at the apathy of the passers-by but ‘The Golden Light’ focuses on helping the underprivileged children of a school in a squatter camp with books – a wonder gift for them.
Kim seems to be an ardent animal lover because many of her poems celebrate wild life and give a vivid description of how a cheetah hunts its prey, how mother cheetah nurtures her cubs, how a lion lies on golden grass, even her Utopia mentions “stamping buffalo.” Iconic South African birds too catch her attention to inspire a poem. The opening lines of ‘Lessons Learned in a rural village’ seem to be inspired from William Blake’s poem ‘The Little Black Boy.’
Some of the poems are too personal and comment on how life unfolds, offering unforgettable memories, moments of exhilaration and dismay, travails of a working mother and insecurities of an empty nest but they all make life worth living. Heaviness of this book would linger around you even when you finish and put it away.
Thank you for reading this post. Do you have a book in mind that has touched you deeply? Please share your reflections.
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– Balroop Singh
Dorinda Duclos, a poet par excellence has reviewed my debut book ‘Sublime Shadows Of Life.’ I hope you would like to read her wonderful 5 star review and share it.
When a poet of Dorinda’s caliber reviews poetry, and gives a positive view, it tinges every nerve and sinew.
The poems in this collection talk about bruised emotions and lost passions, which linger around us even when we try to bury them. While these poems give them a channel to flow freely, they also send vibes of positivity to deal with their shadows.
From the author herself:
“Sublime Shadows of Life is a comment on life, its turbulent curves and relationships. It envisions people through the prism of poetry. I, you, he, we and they are universal symbols which highlight the fact that happiness is not a destination but a chasm to bury agony, anguish, grief, distress and move on! No sea of solitude is so deep that it can drown us. Sometimes aspirations are trampled upon, the boulders of exploitation and discrimination may block your path but those who tread on undeterred are always successful.”
“Sublime Shadows of Life is a perfectly titled book, from author Balroop Singh. Each poem easily glides into the next yet, each one is its own entity. Singh captivates your heart, drawing you into her words, allowing you to feel the pain, the love, the longing for lost possessions and the fear of death. These…
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