Sunday, May 1, 2011
Review: Little Black Paramita
Published by Guernica Editions; March 1, 2011
I got this via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis via Netgalley maketing:
In her first collection of poems, Suzanne Robertson meditates on the nature of intimacy; the connective tissue that binds stranger to stranger, human to animal, soul to landscape, heart to mind. Inspired by the Buddhist paramitas - actions that spark a spiritual sojourn, the poems attempt to both transcend and stay grounded in a conventional universe. Follow the humourous, pedestrian plight of a secretary/writer grappling with her noonday demon, her love affair with Little Black, and the metamorphosis of her marriage as she harnesses the practical power of poetry, marrying words "to the wind horse," "to the lies and the gossip and the truth of the river / as it pours out the mouth of right-now." Paramita,Little Black explores acts of transformation; documenting a journey to live and love authentically amidst the transient anatomy of our twenty- first century lives.
Paramita, Little Black was published as part of Guernica's First Poet Series, which is made up of first full poetry collections by authors 35 and younger.
I have mixed feelings about this collection of poetry. The poetry itself was very unique. However it took a long time to get used to Robertson's style of writing, which at times left the meaning of the poems unclear.
It's a great read, but it is definitely one that you will have to take your time with. Robertson's personification of nature is not a novel concept but her ability to couple that writing style with real life scenarios does make her poetry unique and meaningful. She has a wonderful way with words that keeps certain sentences ingrained into your head for days. "Parents irrevocably split like the wedges of fruit they feed to children." (page 12) is a great example.
I do think that is a great collection of a more modern style of poetry that would be a nice change from the more traditional poetry taught in English and literature classes. It is well worth the read, but may take some getting used to.