aquatique

books, knitting, food and whatever else I want to write about

It is always a bit difficult to review a book of poetry and personal essays. The work is subjective and this one in particular has a singular voice. Not being American or black, I can not fully understand or empathize with all the experiences in this book. As a visible minority and as a human being with feelings, I can sympathize in more ways than one. The prose and words are powerful in this book.…

In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place; and in the sky The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the Dead. Short days ago We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, Loved and were loved, and now we lie In Flanders fields. Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw The torch; be yours…

When I started this, I began to note the sonnets I really liked, but stopped in the 70s because I realized I liked almost all of them and the list was too long. While I can not relate to the emotions of some of them, there are many variations in this book. There are themes of not just love but of time, change, politics, desire, death, and much more. I found the theme of time…

Years ago, sometime after I read Anna Karenina and knew that Russian Literature as one of my first literary loves as a result, I had this notion I would learn Russian one day. "Then I can read Tolstoy's War and Peace, Pasternak's Doctor Zhivago, and Dostoyevsky," As one does when one is young, in literary love, and naive. When I realized I had no time to learn Russian (I was only interested in reading it),…

It has been a few years since I read a Shakespeare play. While I have reread one since high school, I have not taken time to read one on my own. I actually miss being taught Shakespeare especially the tragedies where there is so much going on. Othello has high drama, and at first, I liked the Othello character because he seemed innocent, honest, and devoted, but since this is a Shakespearean tragedy, he also…

A novel in verse about the romance between the cynical dandy Eugene Onegin and Tatyana, a bookish country girl. The story itself is not particularly unique or special, but I liked this novel from the first page. I can easily see myself rereading it in years just because I find the writing style wonderful and engaging. It is written entirely of iambic tetrameter. Aleksandr Pushkin is considered as the founder of modern Russian literature; his…

Many people who have read Beowulf are rather turned off by its old style, slow story, and almost complete lack of characterization among other things. I never studied this in school, but I think I would have liked it more if a passionate English teacher had done so especially with this translation of the story. I am not going to lie; I found the story rather long and ardurous. My mind wandered quite a bit…

Like Nancy Willard the author of this book, I loved William Blake's poetry from the first time I read it. I even made a layout inspired by and using "Tyger" for this domain about five years ago. In high school, I chose a Blake poem for a history assignment which allowed me to further delve into his work and biography. Blake was a unique poet and artist in his time, and often considered eccentric by…