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  • By Gretchen Lee Bourquin
    Oct 15, 2009
    "Great imagry and character- makes you want more" Have you ever constructed a jigsaw puzzle? This is much the way I felt as I made my way through A.F. Stewart’s collection of poetry, Tears of Poetry. Ms Stewart divides her poetry into the sections Various Themes and Celtic Themes. Ms. Stewart is also a fantasy writer, and it shows. The first section takes you into a world of Lizard Kings, Mythological gods, Lady’s in Waiting, through the wilderness and back. It is as if she has given me small scenes of a larger puzzle that makes me long for the pieces to join them all together and hang the finished product on my wall. The poetry has a sense of longing, and an unapologetic outcry of outcast to it. The first poem, The Lizard King begins “Dark Rider of a Storm Nighthawk above the streetlights” Dragons are described as “vast and obscure.” Dionysus exhibits “A shout through the darkness/ Thus spoke the madness,/ collecting up followers.” Ms. Stewart does just that—collects us.... More > By embracing her inner outcast she calls us to do the same. In the next section, Celtic Themes, there is a sense that she knows her Celtic history and terminology – and even includes a Celtic Glossary at the beginning of the Celtic section. The glossary was helpful, but I think in text citations and foot notes would have made it easier to read through the less familiar parts of Celtic culture. The language in this section is rhythmic and aesthetically pleasant, although I felt that a broader knowledge on my part of Celtic culture and history would have served me well. Probably the most familiar to me was the poem Son of the Forest, which follows Lancelot’s story of Arthurian Legend. The poem is micro-epic (almost 3 pages long) and succeeds in carrying strong imagery throughout Here is the first stanza. It was a sylvan birthplace,/ushered in alone, uncaring/.Left to breathe with no caress, but docile winds that took pity/on a poor helpless babe./To the tranquil waters of Her lake, they carried scent and flora./Primroses, bluebells and thorns,/scattered their message in the briars of Broceliande./So the Lady of Mist,/and the blooms of spring could wrap his soul/around oak and ash./She entwined a spell in hawthorn,/mixed darkly with the spectre of mysteries and mistletoe. Quite the setup for a boy who will one day rival the king. I enjoyed the poetry in both sections, although my personal preference who most likely lean toward the first. The poems in both sections are very visual and story driven, and in reading them there is a definite sense that you are being invited in to a fantasy world this poet visits often.< Less
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Product Details

First Edition
Anita Stewart
April 25, 2007
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
0.27 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
6 wide x 9 tall
Product ID
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