Life Is Unfinished Without The Language Of Poetry


Publisher: Xlibris Pages: 122 Price: (paperback) $19.99 ISBN: 9781796053937 Reviewed: February, 2020 Author Website: Visit »

Life Is Unfinished Without The Language Of Poetry by Wanas is a poetry collection about longing, time, silence, and the elusive nature of memories.

This is a simple book with three “chapters” featuring short poems, short stanzas, and unrhymed lines, with titles such as “Time Between Time,” “Inside Of Me,” and “Forever And Never.” It’s held together through the poet’s use of imagery, consistency of free verse form and the visual choice to center all the lines. (The centering, however, distracts from the language and doesn’t enhance the presentation.)

Wanas often pairs a feeling, a memory, and a nature simile or metaphor to express the speaker’s state of being, as in “Un-Remembering You,” which begins, “I felt you today/ or/ maybe it was but a/ memory-/ left over/ like puddles of water after a storm. In “Neverwhere,” he addresses an unseen person, “I’m not afraid/ of your secrets/ -none of them// They unthaw/ my dreams/ sometimes/ that have become frozen/ like a lake/ encrusted in ice.” While the line breaks are not especially dramatic, the short lines serve to highlight the simple imagery.

These poems focus on the inner voice and state of feelings. While they include imagery, much of it is overly familiar; for example, it’s disappointing to see “broken glass” repeatedly because it’s a clichéd image of pain. Poems such as “Sounds of Silence in High Desert” are more effective because they are more specific in terms of time, place and setting, “Nothing moves at noon- especially in August/ unless you are under a Juniper tree.”

Those looking for a variety of images and types of speakers will be disappointed by this offering. But readers who want to experience airy poems often tinted with melancholia may appreciate this collection, whose strengths include reflective mood, expressiveness of emotion, and consistency of theme.

Also available in hardcover and ebook.

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