2017/05/20

BOOK REVIEW:
PENGUIN MODERN POETS 3

Title: Penguin Modern Poets 3: Your Family, Your Body
Authors: Malika Booker, Sharon Olds, Warsan Shire
Published: 2017
Language: English
Pages: 117
Rating: 4/5


Summary:
This is a collection of poetry featuring three different authors.


Review:
Having previously read Penguin Modern Poets 1 and 2 and not being overwhelmed, this was a happy surprise.

Warsan Shire is already one of my favorite poets, so I was very excited to read some more of her work, but I was also impressed by the two others, perhaps in particular Malika Booker. All three have a distinct voice, something to say and does this beautifully. The collection is has an honesty and rawness to it that is quite moving.

One of my new favorite poems from this collection is The Ugly Daughter by Shire:

Knows loss intimately,
carries whole cities in her belly.

As a child, relatives wouldn't hold her.
She was splintered wood and sea water,
she reminded them of the war.

On her fifteenth birthday you taught her
how to tie her hair like rope
and smoke it over burning frankincense.

You made her gargle rosewater
and while she coughed, said
Macaanto, girls sholdn't smell
of lonely or empty.

You're her mother.
Why did you not warn her?
That she will not be loved
if she is covered in continents,
if her teeth are small colonies,
if her stomach is an island,
if her thighs are borders?

Who wants to lie down
and watch the world burn
in their bedroom?

Your daughter's face is a small riot,
her hands are a civil war,
a refugee camp behind each ear,
a body littered with ugly things

but God,
doesn't she wear
the world well.
p 100-101

Overall, this was an excellent collection and I would definitely recommend it. 
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