Obanigba’s debut book of poetry juxtaposes lighthearted fancy and crippling self-doubt.
Emotions run the gamut in this collection of one hundred poems ranging from candy-sweet musings on a summer day to the anxiety-ridden feelings of facing an uncertain future. While the collection varies greatly in content, a few central themes abound: To achieve success in this unpredictable world, it’s of the utmost importance to work hard and to rely on no one but yourself. The work, written in a straightforward, simple style, is short on depth and complexity, which hinders its message. A number of pieces in the collection are dedicated to questioning the author’s self-worth: In “will I or will I not?” Obanigba writes, “Will I ever or will I not, / Will I remember it seems I forgot? / So much confusion this is crazy, / So many goals but far too lazy, / Will I get round to things I need to get done, / Or will I relax, chill, and have fun.” This poem, and most others, becomes a missed opportunity due to its shallow phrasing, which sacrifices the development of its idea in favor of weak rhyming. What makes the work relatable, though, are the familiar themes and Obanigba’s candid examination of her own shortcomings. Throughout the collection, the author discusses her fears of failure and not having what it takes to succeed. Most if not all readers can identify with these feelings of inadequacy; at one time or another, everyone can relate to Obanigba’s attempt to find her path in life. The collection nevertheless struggles to make an impression due to its noncommittal pursuit to developing this very theme. However, the book’s most egregious flaw is its poor editing. The anthology is rife with misspellings, grammatical missteps and punctuation errors. Some are mere annoyances, such as the misuse of “your” vs. “you’re,” but other mistakes actually confuse the message behind the poems, while distracting and diminishing the work.
A heartfelt collection of poetry in need of further development and editing.