Every truth has four corners: as a teacher I give you one corner, and it is for you to find the other three. Confucius

20 June 2011

Hi Everyone,

Another poetry book review, this time by Roger Housden. I just loved this book for its insight and warmth.....enjoy :)

Today I am reviewing Ten Poems to Change Your Life by author and poet Roger Housden. Published in 2003, this book is a collection of poems that have been significant to the author, but all are much more than that. These poems, beginning with the transformational poem
The Journey by Mary Oliver (following) are powerful, moving.....

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice-
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend by life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do-
determined to save
the only life that you could save.

Gradually the poems and Housden's critique of each lead the reader from the beginning of the life journey to the end with insight and a connectedness that allows you to relate the verse to your own life experience

Other poets featured include Antonio Machado, Walt Whitman, Rumi, Kabir, Pablo Neruda, Galway Kinnell, W.S. Merwin and Derek Walcott, and a brief biography of each is included.

Subsequent publications by Housden include Ten Poems to Change Your Life Again and Again
(2007) Chasing Rumi: A Fable About Finding the Heart's True Desire details are available on his website.

Talk Soon, Cynthia x