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At the risk of being flippant, it’s possible that my favorite thing about this book is its size. I don’t mean that I was excited it would be a fast read, though I did go through it all while out on a walk. I mean it’s the perfect size to slip into a purse or a capacious hoodie pocket to take out for a stroll, either in case you suddenly find yourself in need of a poem or if you want to find the perfect setting to read a particular poem.

Kites is perfect for either endeavor. The poems are short—I don’t think any was longer than a dozen lines, and most were shorter—and easy to read in a breath. That doesn’t mean there’s nothing to them. Quite the contrary; these are poems that linger with the reader.

As I said earlier, I brought the collection with me on a walk, because the weather was beautiful and I didn’t want to read inside. I’m glad I did. Walking after reading a few poems, even from one park bench to the next, gave me a chance to dwell on the imagery and some occasional bits of beautiful wordplay. Perhaps because I read them in a park on a summer day, the poems centered on nature and with moments of vibrant color stood out to me the most. (I particularly enjoyed “First Month,” “In Season,” and “November Shopping.”) Another day, perhaps when I’m stuck inside because of the rain or when I’m waiting at a train station, others may speak to me more.

I at first assumed the subtitle, A Year of 50 Short Poems, only meant the poems had been written over the span of a year. That may be true, but there is another possible reading. These poems are meant to be revisited over the course of a year, or at least will be at their best if that is how they are read. Not only would it allow for different poems to stand out in different seasons, but it would also allow one poem to show different sides to itself.

How might I feel about “November Shopping,” a poem about gray and a splash of color, if I read it in November as opposed to June? What of “In Season,” a poem that described an image I could easily imagine seeing if I were to look up from the book at the right time? It’s an intriguing idea, and one which I am eager to explore.

Reviewed By:

Author Greg Gregory
Star Count 5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 66 pages
Publisher Avenafatua Press
Publish Date 25-Apr-2022
ISBN 9781732650817 Buy this Book
Issue July 2022
Category Poetry & Short Stories