The name of this poetry collection is Depersonalise. MSJ, the author, could not have picked a more fitting name, in my opinion. What I first thought was a sign of amateur writing that lacked flavour, is, in fact, an ingenious way of communicating depersonalization to the reader. The poems seem as if they are out of reach as you read them. They are stuffed with raw emotion, but just as you near the last word, you realize there is no climax. When there is expected a satisfying high, all the reader gets is the fading of the emotion.
As I was reading these poems, I found myself anxious and contemplative. That is the true beauty of writing such as this one. The emotion and the force of it hits you unexpectedly and then you are left hollow when the words fade.
A month ago I read and reviewed We Shed Our Skin Like Dynamite, a fantastic poetry collection by Conyer Clayton. After that I interviewed the fabulous Conyer Clayton! Through this interview I tried to bring the author’s creative processes closer to the reader. Here’s what I found out!
Conyer Clayton is an Ottawa-based artist and gymnastics coach, originally from Louisville, Kentucky. She has 7 chapbooks (one forthcoming with Collusion Books, Fall 2020, in collaboration with Manahil Bandukwala), and 2 albums. She is the winner of Arc’s 2017 Diana Brebner Prize and The Capilano Review’s 2019 Robin Blaser Poetry Contest, and writes reviews for Canthius. Her debut full-length collection of poetry is We Shed Our Skin Like Dynamite (Guernica Editions, 2020). Stay updated on her endeavors at conyerclayton.com.
In her debut poetry collection, Conyer Clayton sheds her skin to reveal true vulnerability. We Shed Our Skin Like Dynamite is the title the author gave a collection of deeply personal poems which speak of life struggles.
The themes of sex, addiction, and emotions are discussed in a way I would describe as tragicomic. As much as the language used is rich, there is also this ambience of contemporary struggle of a young person in the twenty-first century. Because of this, the message is much more relatable and it creates a friendship-like relationship between the author and the reading. I would further explain this relationship as a friendly conversation in which the author tells you what had happened to them.
Break Your Glass Slippers is a poetry collection by Amanda Lovelace. It is also the first book within a bigger collection named You Are Your Own Fairy Tale. I have read the previous Amanda Lovelace’s collection and loved them very much – especially The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One and The Princess Saves Herself in this One. So, it is not surprising to say that I was excited when I got the opportunity to read this book.
„so often we are our own true love.“
„withholding forgiveness can be a form of self-care“
Aphrodite Made Me Do It is a masterpiece poetry collection written by Trista Mateer. It deals with abuse, rape, the value of a woman and many other topics that are currently in the spotlight.
To sing of love
is almost always
to sing of war.
I believe these are all things that ought to be talked about and I especially appreciate the manner in which Trista Mateer talks about them. I love that she didn’t go the political route! She presented all these issues and worries in a way that didn’t present political arguments, but what it did show was a wound on her soul. And then it revealed a wound on my own soul. I felt deeply for what she wrote.
The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One is a wonderful poetry collection written by Amanda Lovelace. This is the third book in a series named Women Are Some Kind of Magic. (You can read my review of the first book The Princess Saves Herself in this One here.)
This book is separated into four sections:
I the sky
III the song
I personally did not see a big change in tone between the parts of the book. I hoped it would be noticeable, but okay. There are a few poems I felt deeply and I sincerely related to them. But there where also some I did not enjoy and found quite boring – they were mostly placed in the last two parts of the book.
Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur is an amazing poetry collection separated into four parts:
it is your blood in my veins tell me how i’m supposed to forget
I really enjoyed this collection. I know there is a lot of controversy about this book and I can see what the problems would be. However, the fact is I enjoyed it, and that is the only thing that matters.
I Love My Love is another poetry collection. It was written by Reyna Mays. This poetry collection is raw, sharp, unapologetic. I feel like an uncut diamond.
I Love My Love is a poetry collection I have quite divided opinions about. Some of the poems were heartbreaking, I connected completely with the ideas they were carrying. For example pseudo and on however long.
“I was wondering if you could be my everything – after I realized I would be anything for you. … I can still smell you on my skin. Our nights feel like decades while our hearts beg for centuries.
I am sure, I could spend lifetimes with you.“
This is an excerpt from the poem on however long. This poem. I do not even know where to start. I loved every single line. It is full, filled with that special kind of suicidal love I would die for (excuse the pun). It is strong and it takes you to lands undiscovered. I did not read this poem, I absorbed it.
With Paper for Feet is a poetry collection by Jennifer A. McGowan. It consists of 5 sections that separate poems with motifs connected to folklore, mythology, religion, Shakespeare, and history. As the author, Jennifer A. McGowan says herself, through these poems she tried to give voices to silent and unheard characters, which are mainly women.
As this poetry collection has not gotten any buzz around it at all yet, I am kind of opening the doors for it now. One this I must say about With Paper for Feet is that is was unique. I loved the author’s voice and I could actually feel what was presented in some poems.
There was one poem that truly spoke to me – Pharaoh’s Concubine.