Within: The Source of My Words

David Martin

Publisher: Xlibris Pages: 93 Price: (paperback) $15.99 ISBN: 9781469184777 Reviewed: August, 2012 Author Website: Visit »

The Venezuelan-born, native Spanish-speaking David Martin came to the U.S. in 1995 at the age of 20 in order to learn English. The son of a Venezuelan mother and an American father, he found that writing the poems in Within: The Source of My Words was the most effective path to building his vocabulary and expressing his feelings. In his brief introduction, he describes learning English as an “arduous struggle” and that this collection is his “take on beauty and the truth as [he] see[s] it.”

Readers who are looking for poems set in South America or that incorporate bits of Spanish should look elsewhere. Martin includes only one poem, “Motherland,” that explicitly describes his feelings for where he grew up, albeit in mostly abstract terms along the lines of “Nostalgia consumes my thoughts.” He adds a minimum of landscape description – “the grandeur of your eternal cascading waterfalls” – but includes no details or specific names of places.

Martin’s most energetic poems include the nature poem “Unemotional Winter,” which crackles with imagery such as: “white sudden mantle” and “awe-stricken red robin” and “unkind cold shortly fallows.” In addition, some of his many love poems, such as “A Brave Heart,” employ lively comparisons, as when he describes a lover’s rejection as a “blunt malicious strike” and a “Well-placed sucker punch.”

Ultimately, Within has too many stock phrases, such as, “You are the brightest star in my sky” and “I wear my heart / On my sleeve,” to attract sophisticated poetry readers, though it might draw some interest for its exuberant embrace of love and nature.

Also available as an ebook.

Author's Current Residence
Sarasota, Florida
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