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Tag: Martin Shone

After the Rain book reviews

My poetry book, After the Rain, has had its first two reviews! 🙂

After the Rain

Here is Diane Denton’s review from Goodreads.

~

I’ve been following Martin Shone’s blog, taken pleasure, been reassured and inspired by his poetry for many years. I keep his first two collections close by and often pick them up to randomly open and be guided by as I might my Little Zen Companion. I expected After the Rain to be as companionably soothing, sensory and enlightening. And so it is, once more inhaling and exhaling poetry in caressing arrangements of words, light as a feather while defying gravity, rising out of Martin’s intuitive observations and perceptive reflections, as well as his experience, imagination and belief that, as I wrote in my review of his Silence Happens, “beauty, peace and love are always available”.

Just a few pages into After the Rain, I had to stop and take a deep breath before reading further—for the best of reasons. I realized I was witnessing a favorite poet’s maturing, strengthening, and deepening. He was still offering the music of his soul for me to “sing along”, but, also, a new complexity of rhythms, sounds and understanding. Without losing any of his writing’s freshness and delicacy, his lyrical musings had become more inspired and inspiring, confident and courageous, distinct and layered: within its slender whole/there are worlds within worlds within worlds (Worlds Within Worlds, Page 118). Another of the poems (As a Leaf Falls, page 92) could well describe the effect of reading After the Rain: As it falls/and as it nears/a speck of shadow/can be seen/increasing in size/upon the earth/ and when it settles/shadowless/it frees light.

It frees light. Martin’s poetry frees light, like a leaf falling, like many leaves falling, floating, spiraling, influencing shadows as it offers different views of brilliance. It illuminates life’s branches reaching inside and out, up and down, strong and willowy and broken, and is another sound in nature, as delicate as the finest silk, a cacophony of such minuteness, that settles upon all things (Upon All Things, Page 39), begging us, as nature does, to return to tree’s soul/to nourish new life/buds of peace/to shine/to release/and to soak/for us to live and breathe.

Martin’s poetry often reminds me of that of the Victorian poetess Christina Rossetti, because of its inclination to let nature—weather, birds, insects, flowers, trees—direct its metaphors and meaning. There are so many poems in this collection that stood out as favorites for me, but the one that I return to more than any other is As Bluebells Distract My Mind (Page 57), too long to quote in full here, so I offer its last two lines:

How can I write anything to compare with this magic
therefore I regard the distractions around me and put down my pen
.

After the Rain offers a sublime invitation to live and breathe through all the senses, contemplation, conscience, the heart’s joys and sorrow, spiritual reflection, and, especially, magical distraction, which is, after all, the poet’s best muse and his audience’s best reason for attending to what he creates.

~

Here is Mary Beddows’s review

Beautifully written, and very powerful. I was given this book as a gift, and thoroughly enjoyed delving into its wonderful contents. After a stressful day, I open it and find peace. I highly recommend giving it a try!

~

Diane is an author and artist. Two of her published works are A House Near Luccoli and To A Strange Somewhere Fled. Her latest work to be published very soon is Without the Veil Between. Anne Bronte: A Fine and Subtle Spirit.

After the Rain is available from Lulu, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon. It contains over 100 poems of Love, Nature, Humanity, Romance and Passion.

After the Rain

Thank you all for reading 🙂

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this, dark echo of birth

It tears its way
down from the eyes
down from the soul
down from the beginning

It tears its way
into the world
to end

and so it begins

for there are moments
of saturated empathy
of compassion
of the need to feel

and so it begins

this, dark echo of birth
this mirth
this, rain
this pain

tears its way
into a heart
unconsummated

When silence comes

The sun rises upon us all
but in reality
we drift towards the light
in anticipation
of the coming night

And so it began in that moment of birth
when darkness
thrust us into the light

We are creatures of curiosity
We want to know
to feel
to believe we are anything but this

Skin of time …

We drift towards the light
in hopeful remembrances
of the night

Our souls are carried by these bone rafts
kissing ripples
till the pond is shrouded
in the stillness
of early morning’s awakening

~

When silence comes
and mists clear
Souls release
their body’s fear

Freedom comes from loving what is

I believe
in the something within us

I believe
we can be better than yesterday

I believe
pain comes when it is needed

I believe
in the realization of being

I believe
another word for peace is chaos

I believe
chaos is another word struggle

I believe
we have yet to find the four corners of our jigsaw

I believe
in love’s natural state of naked awareness

I believe
the skin of age is equal to the trickle of knowledge

I believe
in the scent of passion

I believe
that one day, we shall accept our failings

I believe
freedom comes from loving what is

I believe
in you

Where do the moments go?

Where do the moments go
is there some kind of lost time?

Does the wind only settle
when it has nowhere else to travel
or does it cease its movement
because it has found what it’s looking for?

Where do the moments go?

Unspoken

The ballet of death
as much as
the ballet of life
is sewn and performed together
for one without the other
is nothing but a memory
of that unspoken thing

and all together
we move through the rain
where bows and roses bloom
knowing that come too soon
is that, unspoken thing

we shelter our souls
from the rains of humanity’s
tears
hoping there comes a time
when she gives her sign
of that unspoken thing

our feeling hearts
our tremulous blood
our awakening eye

thine distant shore
comes to the fore
as we dare to speak

that unspoken thing

for love is nothing
but a coming together
of life and death

for without which
we cannot finish the poem

Freedom

… feel
the temptation to seduce
and to be seduced

feel that tingle of slowness
surrounding your skin

inhale the moment
allow it to inhabit your beat

allow it to seduce your mind
into believing you are free

…  feel
your skin
and the moisture between your fingers

feel the slowness of time
kissing your soul

inhale and exhale
touch the essence of, passion

allow it to seduce you
allow it your freedom

… feel
the vibration of life
tremble inside your heart

between your fingers
your toes, your thighs, your

freedoms

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