Gene B. Pacifico’s Poetic Fever is a poetry collection revolving around the author’s values and ordinary joys: the love between a husband and wife, the companionship of a pet dog, the beauty of nature, and the goodness of God.
These are short, mostly unrhymed poems containing lively, homey images and high spirits. Many derive their central energy from brief images and adventurous actions, as in “Ole Whiskey,” which begins, “Dog’s day doom/ Count a fat moon/ Sent a barrel of Tennessee Whiskey/ To my home stead [sic] saloon.” (While this poem rhymes, it’s one of the few.)
While many are choppily written, some of the pieces make good use of sound and feature original combinations of images, such as “Sleep in the hare of an oracle,” which ends: “A reality to swim to swirl/ In an ox an axel/ The Angels to water/ From the core/ Sleep in the hare or the oracle.”
More often, however, poems read like prose cut into random lines, with little attention to musicality or compression. And many seen nonsensical, written just to play with words, such as “Pedestal for Builders”: “How do you do/ Is it a go?/ Blow Snow/ Hall to all leaders/ Rein Hold off/ It’s our life…”
The religious poems, while earnest, often have a circular logic and simplistic images. They are less personal and more vague; for example, “Forever God Love,” which begins “God’s love is real/ For real it is/ Yes it is/ Baby Dear,” and ends confusingly, “Because God loves all/ For people all really us.”
A few poems are repeated, seemingly by accident. More proofreading would have been helpful for a smoother read.
With its short lines and often exuberant attitude, Poetic Fever has energy and a folksy style some might enjoy. But the poems require more attention to attract a wide audience.
Also available as an ebook.