Introspective verse that explores the many facets of a young woman’s experiences.
In her second collection of poetry, Fisher (Life, Love, and Letting Go, 2008) delves deeply into her own life’s despairs and hopes. Her impressionistic accounts are largely devoid of narrative and instead focus largely on loneliness and frustrated soul-searching, punctuated by occasional bursts of joy or odes to beloved people. The pains of living in a dangerous environment (“Bullets flying, police sirens sound / Everyone in fear hitting the ground”) also loom large throughout the collection. In most poems, the author relies on rhyming couplets, and many also feature structured repetition at the start of every line: “One friend a friend I do adore / One friend a friend I hardly see any more.” In some cases, this occurs between poems as well, with many lines showing up in more than one verse; as a result, some entries read like multiple drafts of the same poem rather than distinct works. The emotional territory that the author explores—lost love, desire for intimacy, the struggle to bring dreams to fruition—will be familiar to any fan of confessional writing, but the vulnerability and honesty of her verses are nonetheless remarkable. That said, they’re frequently hindered by clichéd word choices and imagery, such as, “Grab a star, ride the moon / As long as you believe in yourself there is nothing that you can’t do.” Such sections sap the poems’ authenticity and place the author at a remove, weakening the emotional punch of the more original entries. However, Fisher’s sincere effort to connect with readers remains apparent throughout, and even the more banal poems touch on universal themes that are likely to resonate. Some, such as the poignant social commentary “If You Could See the World thru My Eyes,” also serve as potent reminders of the vast variety of human experience.
A heartfelt, sometimes-insightful collection bogged down by frequent clichés and repetition.