Posted by Matt McAvoy on Tuesday, March 7, 2017 Under: Book Reviews

Poetry can be a wonderful expression of art, if written well – if not, it can be infuriating.  Like classical music, when beautifully crafted, it is hard not to love.  This emotional collection, by Norman Berisford, is at times a sublime love ballad, at others a celebration of all things “life” – from the leaves on the ground to the sun, from grieving for a loved one, to God’s nature and Creation itself.  The odes and poems in this anthology vary in style from prose to verse, from blinking to sweeping, and I believe there is a piece here for all readers’ taste, save perhaps the most hard and cynical of hearts.

Although the poems are not directly connected (except, perhaps in theme and context), their arrangement within the book suggests a desire to draw the reader into an odyssey from the opening line, a touching journey, heartbreaking at times, with only one beginning and one inevitable outcome, stopping along the way to share in the author’s unquestioning love affair with the English countryside; Norman’s passion for his beloved home country is almost hymn-like at times.

Reading this poetry was an absolute pleasure.  There are 40 pieces here to choose from, and picking a favourite is hard, particularly is poetry often comes down to a matter of taste; I do like the short, jolly verses of “The Musician” and “I Wonder Why”, and the brief, sad tribute in “Requiem”.  In my opinion the clever prose is most visible in “Valhalla”.  You may disagree with my choices, but one thing I’m certain of is that you will find many works here you will like.

In : Book Reviews 

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