Review: Selected Poems by E.E. Cummings

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The one hundred and fifty-six poems here, arranged in twelve sections and introduced by E. E. Cummings’s biographer, include his most popular poems, spanning his earliest creations, his vivacious linguistic acrobatics, up to his last valedictory sonnets. Also featured are thirteen drawings, oils, and watercolors by Cummings, most of them never before published.

The selection includes most of the favorites plus many fresh and surprising examples of Cummings’s several poetic styles. The corrected texts established by George J. Firmage have been used throughout. (From Goodreads)

Personal Take: I’ve read bits and pieces of E.E. Cummings work, and noted the interesting stylings he applies, but never read his work as a collection. I think this may have been the hardest book I’ve ever read. While it helped that there were interluding breaks throughout the book outlining the themes of his poetry, and his experimentation with poetry and prose, a few of his pieces sometimes felt they were beyond my comprehension. It’s absolutely astounding to see how he manipulated words with visual intention in mind– and he was truly a genius for breaking the rules. His later works were my favorite though, as it were the ones that were truly in touch with his thoughts, and it’s something I found myself relating to.

E.E. Cummings is a must read poet, if only just to experience his intoned words.

Audience: Cummings explores sexuality and sexual freedom in his poetry (and much of it is objectifying the female body…), so that warrants adult readers.

Rating:

threehalfstars

Other recommendations: There are plenty of E.E. Cummings poetry collection and books published, so be sure to check them out and take your pick!

Review: A Brilliant Madness by Robert M. Drake

A Brilliant Madness

This is an anthology of collective writing from Robert M. Drake written during 2004-2014. A Brilliant Madness is a reflection of the social collapses in the 21st century. The social programming, the daily routine and the economic struggles we all go through blindly. What has happen to us? Where did all the love go? We have all gone beautifully mad in a beautifully mad world. (From Goodreads)

Personal Take: I’m such a huge fan of R.M Drake’s poetry on Intagram, and having it all in one book, with his own artwork, is just as bewitching. While I enjoyed his last anthology, Black Butterfly, I feel like this held his best collection yet. It’s still raw and haunting, but covered pretty broad topics, like society and changing times.

On some level, readers will be able relate to his words and the human experiences, even if it had darker themes, and it’s not always that way, as a few dabble with courage and nostalgia and the good old times. For me, one of the pieces particularly struck a deep chord, and I knew after reading it that this is one of my favorites.

This is one poetry collection that’s not to be missed.

Audience: It feels like he’s channeling Charles Bukowski, which means there are plenty of swear words. It also explores dark themes of humanity.

Rating: 

4stars

Other recommendations: R. M. Drake published a few books, but his well known poetry collect is Black Butterfly, which is a combination of 2 previously published book. He’s also published a collection of stories, Beautiful and the Damned.

Review: Black Butterfly by Robert M. Drake

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The Black Butterfly is a symbol of transformation and rebirth after death. Drake wrote this book for those who have lost someone in death and in life. This book is a collection of memories and experiences Drake lived after the death of one of his brothers. He promised he would write him a few words after he failed to complete the task while his brother was alive. (From Goodreads)

Personal Take: After reading the beautiful poetry of R.M Drake, I was beyond ecstatic to find out that he’d released a collection of his poetry. Even though this book was a collection of the loss he felt, it was still beautiful in the love that it described too. It’s both raw and emotional, with undertones of his intent, which comes off so strikingly. The illustrations added to its beauty as well. It’s something any person can relate to and aspire to as well.

This is a must on all shelves.

Audience: Older, as there are dark themes.

Rating: 

4halfstars

 

Other recommendations: R.M Drake recently released A Brilliant Madness, and will soon release a collection of writings, Beautiful and Damned, among other things.