Morris’ (Bedtime Tail, 2012) short, melancholy collection of poetry brims with remorse but also with the wisdom that comes from age and reflection.
This quick read might cause murky, unsettling emotions to swirl up from forgotten memories. Aging, betrayal, inner reflection, a dismal view from a street corner—something in this collection will speak to nearly everyone. As they make their way through the emotional journey, some readers will connect to the poems that travel through darkness to find the sparks of light that remind us to keep going. Though some of the lines feel a bit clichéd—i.e., “Bloom where you’re planted,” from a poem called “Thrive”—the work as a whole feels like a fresh, sobering look at reality. In “City,” readers see the hopelessness that can consume an urban environment: “Little girl want some money; / she gonna’ go find a honey,” and “Family there, ain’t got a lot: / live in a shelter, sleep on a cot. / Old woman by the door, she don’t wanna’ live no more.” The bleak outlook is somewhat countered by those slivers of light, as in “Camouflage,” with lines like, “I am not a soldier, though I camouflaged emotions, and bravely fought on.” Ultimately, the cold, gray tone is more commiserative than inspiring. “Finally,” the poem continues, “through the wisdom only age brings…I realized that in losing, I won.” Morris offers warm respite from the storm, like a friend with whom to compare visions of dark clouds.
A worthy read, especially for the disillusioned.