National Poetry Month: Four More Favorites

I’ve also enjoyed these slim volumes of accessible verse:

Elements

Sorted by water, air, earth, and fire these nearly forty poems by Christopher Yokel are compelling in their nuance and images. I especially liked “Lux in Tenebris,” “Orion’s Repose,” “Gray and Green,” and “E Pluribus Me.”

The recurring phrase in “And It Was Night” is powerful in its chant.

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Soul Sketches

With some revised, some new, this new edition by Tim Ritter covers memories from childhood to the present. It’s an eclectic gathering of reflections and passions.

From the amusing “Candelabras and Scarlet Tights” to lying in the dirt with his son as Civil War reenactors for a film in “State Blood and French Fries,” it’s a fascinating collection. My favorite is the surprising and transcendent “Joseph’s Prayer.” A laudable collection.

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Prescriptions from the Rhyme Doctor

Allen Rizzi is a writer with over 55 years professional experience including non-fiction, biography, music, poetry and corporate analytic writing. He has additional expertise as a photographer, historical researcher and genealogist. Specialties: Historical non-fiction, nostalgia, public profiles, biographies, and documentary writing in English, Italian, and German. With skills in music composition and lyrics, Allen Rizzi has composed more than 200 songs since 1974.

Prescriptions from the Rhyme Doctor is divided into “The Young Man–Years of Hope” and “The Old Man–Years of Judgment.” It covers a span of about fifty years and certainly changes in style and focus. I especially enjoyed “I Remember Nonna” and “Genealogy,” both written in the author’s later years.

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Red Stilts

Ted Kooser is winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, for Delights and Shadows, and also served two terms as the Poet Laureate of the United States. He is the author of over twenty books, including five for children, he was born in Ames, Iowa, and lives in a small town in Nebraska.

There’s a reason this poet is much loved. His poetry is so full of compelling vignettes of the ordinary, urging the mesmerized reader to pause and become a noticer of details as well. I’d list my favorite, but there are at least ten of them. I just love this man’s compelling work.

My fibromyalgia symptoms got so miserable I thought I’d never be able to write again. I gave away all of my poetry books, including Kooser’s Delights and Shadows and The Poetry Home Repair Manual. I since have gratefully acquired new copies of both.

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