Alimi’s debut poetry collection marks the milestones of an emotional journey of self-exploration across Europe and Africa.
In this multifaceted work, Alimi offers a variety of poems about how he perceives his own life, love and the women who captivate him. The most enigmatic sections precede the poems: They include one the author calls a “Poetry Theme,” a circular chart listing the poems’ different themes; and the preface, which says that many of the poems are about “imagined relationships.” The author explains that he used the poems to help him understand his own personal setbacks and move on with his life. The poems are grouped into nine chapters, and many share the themes of infatuation and doomed romance. The majority, particularly those that focus on women’s physical beauty, lack depth, but those that showcase the author’s desire for personal growth may strike readers as more meaningful. The collection tells the story of Alimi’s emotional development, but the author is fully capable of writing from other points of view; one poem that demonstrates this, “Diana,” begins, “Beautiful red dress looks sunkissed,” and soon shifts to deeper concerns: “I’m so fed up, all I tried was to be someone. At times self-respect is far from my mind.” Unfortunately, many poems fall back on clichés and mixed metaphors to describe individuals and events. At their best, the poems look past sexual desire, and the author examines what he wants from others. At one point, when the verses turn away from soft skin and sweet lips, they compare a relationship to a game of chess.
An intriguing collection about overcoming obstacles and finding inner peace, but one that might have benefited from a stronger edit.