Coffee Break Laughs with a Shot of Motivation

Ihsan Smith

Publisher: iUniverse Pages: 106 Price: (paperback) $13.99 ISBN: 9781532091582 Reviewed: May, 2020 Author Website: Visit »

Coffee Break Laughs with a Shot of Motivation is a collection of witty, rhyming and free-verse poems.

The work is arranged in two sections: “Humorous” and “Motivational.” The Humorous section includes short, pithy amusements, such as: “The roses were red/ But now they’re all dead/ You should’ve given me money instead.” Or: “She moved to the city with her big dreams/ To see her face in magazines./ To live in Manhattan and dance til dawn./ Then she noticed her bags were gone.” The speaker seems to be winking at her readers while dispersing her worldly wise attitude.

Unfortunately, some of the scenarios here seem less humorous than intended. For example: “1 for my sister’s in laws to be./ Since her groom fled the altar that [sic] more cake for me”; “I’m pregnant it’s your baby./ And that’s more yes than maybe./ Your response to all of this was that you think I’m crazy”; “You borrowed some money and my favorite hoops./ You forgot what you borrowed so I stole your cat.”

The Motivational section includes 14 poems that reflect the self-help genre implied by the title. “Courage” gives procrastinators no quarter with these punchy lines: “Can’t keep holding back you’re ready/ Honey there’s no perfect time/ Cannot hide behind tomorrow/ You should be the first in line.”

While some of these pieces, as above, are wryly effective, others offer advice that’s more clichéd than original: “Put your best foot first/ Hold your head up high/ If you must go down/ Not without a fight” and “No one can see your dreams as vividly as you/ And no one will ever understand your dreams the way you do.”

The collection’s poems are uneven, some hitting the target, others missing the mark. Still, the author is aiming for a smile, not a literary masterpiece. On that note, she often succeeds. Readers looking for amusement or self-help/light verse will find moments to appreciate in these pages.

Also available as an ebook.

Available to buy at: