Blurb “Moonflower is a collection of poems that explores the changes that come with old love, new love and the intricacies of life in between.”
Themes Love, Heartbreak and Fear.
Editing Well edited.
We share our thoughts on poetry separately because of the nature of poetry collections. Different poems appeal to different people. So brace up for the long ride.
Read an excerpt from Moonflower here.
Mo It’s poetry and so you are probably expecting me to come through with the disclaimers. Well, sorry to disappoint you, not coming through today. No, not because I’ve suddenly fallen in love with poetry or the constant reading of it has changed me. I picked this book with no expectations (the fact it is just 33 pages must have helped a bit, if I’m being honest). I truly enjoyed the flow of words in each poem. Without using words or phrases shrouded in ambiguity this collection spoke to me and I didn’t even break between pages.
Thanks to this book, I discovered that there is a category of poems called prose poems. A couple of the poems, We could be lovers and At least not yet read like essays or spoken words to me rather than poems. Now I’ve learnt something new. I liked these prose poems because they are more detailed and easier to follow.
The poems are about love, summer, sadness and hurt. I love Introspection, although Well of Colour had me looking up new colours I hadn’t heard of before. Each poem is unique and there are recurring themes like love and heartbreak.
It was an enjoyable read for a non-reader like me.
Lady B Cue in Mo issuing disclaimers… *rolls eyes* Yes, we don’t read a lot of poetry but we decided when we started this blog to read more outside our comfort zones. I usually have to read poems more than once before I understand and appreciate them (assuming they are understandable, some are not!). I like the process of figuring out what the poems are about; it feels like an achievement for me. 🙂
Moonflower is a collection of 21 free verse poems about love and living. I would have said it’s a quick read, but this is poetry and as you may know, poems are usually not quick reads. They are layered and you have to peel these layers back to get to the cores.
Poems on love and loving never grow old but I’m more fascinated by poems on heartbreak. Somehow, they seem to resonate with me more. The first poem in this collection which struck a chord with me is When a love ends. I liked that it outlines the things which happen when a relationship ends;
select what things to take and what to
retire the nicknames
(they will be sour on anyone else)
I liked Layers about the process of opening up to someone else in a relationship until you are both naked before each other. Then covering up little by little by the end of the relationship “only to take them off for someone new.” I liked the use of metaphors in describing this process which many will be all too familiar with whether it’s a platonic relationship or a sexual one. I think it is interesting how poetry more than prose can, in fewer words, convey thoughts more strikingly.
There’s a similar use of metaphors in Part-time Love which I liked. A poem about being afraid to love again because of a previous heartbreak.
I didn’t really mean to hold
his words so tightly but I did
and when I released
my hands were stained
My favourite poem is Well of Colour, a poem about the different shades of colours as a metaphor for perspectives on issues. As an adult, things are no longer just black, white or the primary colours. We see things in a more complex form and Esther portrays this by referring to shades of colours; “magenta, pervenche, verditer, cerulean.” This is a thought I’ve had before but never articulated; how simpler life was from a child’s perspective.
Overall, this collection of poems is easy to understand, universal and relatable.
What didn’t work?
Lady B Adiaha a poem about domestic abuse didn’t work for me. I couldn’t make out what the metaphors in the opening lines represented plus the thought in the stanza seemed illogical. Then the questions at the end especially “did you wish it was different?” kind of trivialised the issue for me. It was a duh moment.
The title for Talk to you soon doesn’t seem to fit with the thoughts in the poem. I read it several times and couldn’t work out what the title had to do with the poem.
The stanzas in Five Hours till morning affected the flow and understanding of the poem. Lines 7 and 8 started a different thought in the second stanza. I think 3, 6, 3, 5, 4 works better for this poem so that each stanza contains a specific thought.
Number of pages 33.
Damage N1,500 on Okadabooks.
Have you read Moonflower? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.