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  • By Esme Ellis
    Sep 15, 2013
    Review by Victor E Smith, author. Esme Ellis’s Dreaming Worlds Awake is a “potpourri” in several of the word’s meanings. As announced in the subtitle, “Stories, Synchronicities, Dreams and Correspondence, with a scatter of poems,” it is a miscellany of literary extracts exploring: “New consciousness, New energy, New writing.” The book is true to its description. But there were times while reading that my (patently masculine) mind went, “Hunh, why is this in here?” or “Are these actual quotes from a disembodied entity named Kuthumi or something the author made up?” In which case the book struck me as a potpourri in the sense of “any mixture, especially of unrelated objects, subjects, etc.” Perhaps intentionally, some of the tidbits tossed out left me hungry. I bless the Internet when it came to the sections on Jacob Epstein’s work—my education in sculpture is shamefully limited. It took the images there (e.g., The Rock Drill) to add substance to the author’s enthusiasm over art objects... More > I’d never seen. But I don’t complain: I like a book that makes me look further to learn something new. What a gift to have come to know Jacob and the Angel and its powerful message, as Esme explained it: “Aspects of the human being which are normally, in some parts of the Christian world at any rate, seen as separate, the Divine and the born-in-sin, fallible human, here they’re in a process of attaining a Wholeness which embraces both Light and Dark.” I experienced, perhaps for the first time, a stone statue whirling with dynamic energy. “Potpourri” has a third meaning that perhaps best, if metaphorically, applies to Esme’s delicately woven web: “a mixture of dried petals of roses or other flowers with spices, kept in a jar for their fragrance.” It was not a book I could toss aside upon completion, facilely assigning it five stars or one. Its impression lingers, evoking “I wonder if…” at unexpected moments. The bloody line between reality and fantasy, between the objective and subjective, between non-fiction and fiction, which I’m supposed to be able to count on when all else fails, has again been blurred and I’m left in that excruciating but oh-so-present “space between” where it is all up to me to decide, arbitrary as it may seem, what is and what isn’t. Highly recommended, especially to those curious to get inside the writer’s mind and see the visionary genius at work.< Less
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Product Details

First Edition
Horus Books
September 14, 2012
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
0.52 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
6 wide x 9 tall
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