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A debut collection of poetry explores love from all angles.

Poems about unrequited desire, real and imagined lust, steadfast love, and breakups dominate this book of poems. The collection offers solid cultural groundwork, describing an urban environment where everyone hangs out at the “Stardust Skating Ring,” bullets fly like the “Wild Wild West,” Lil Wayne plays, and glasses contain Crown Royal. The author provides insight into his personality in the poem “Sincerely Yours”: “I am the quiet corner / In a room full of noise. / I am the unknown man walking / Down a street full of boys.” He soon segues into love-themed poetry and stays there for the remainder of the volume. Stanzas ooze gratitude to his wife or proffer a laundry list of the little things that demonstrate love. In “Broken Traffic Light,” he compares mixed signals received from a lover with the dangers of driving. Several poems are X-rated erotica, like “Washing away Sin,” which details a crude shower sex fantasy, and “Reintroducing Foreplay,” which proposes how to do just that. A bleaker side of the poet emerges in “Vengeance,” dedicated to “my passionately deadly boo,” in which the author hopes “you die of AIDS.” In his ambitious collection, Sincerely Yours sometimes employs impressive metaphors, such as “my body became a tree, and my feet became roots.” But he leans on clichés in lines like “She was like a rose” and “You are my world / My sun, moon, and stars.” Profanity sometimes mars these pages; most of the familiar curse words are here, from “fuck” to “pussy.” The pornographic language fails to titillate in lines like “Sending you continuous injection / Of my hard erection.” And the woe-is-me attitude toward love (“I know you’ve been abused, / But I am the man / That’s the one being used”) grows a bit tiresome after 100-plus pages.

An uneven volume of poems.

Pub Date: July 19th, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-5462-5208-5
Page count: 140pp
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Program: Kirkus Indie
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ChildrenPRAISE SONG FOR THE DAY by Elizabeth Alexander
by Elizabeth Alexander