Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Review: The After Party: Poems by Jana Prikryl

Review: The After Party: Poems
Jana Prikryl
Tim Duggin Books

Product Details 
Reading poetry is a learning situation for me, new with each poet and poem.  This collection of Jana Prikryl’s work is no exception.  I found the initial contact anywhere from difficult to downright confusing.  OK.  I hated it.  But I read on like a good little trooper.  And behold! the confusion began to clear and the difficult became less so.  What I learned from this poet is that a good dictionary can help, like tumbril from a poem of the same name.   In other instances, a search for the name mentioned in the title like Tisi shed light into my darkness, but I’m still not making the connection for some of them.  In short, many of these poems require more work than I’m willing to give to them.  That was the front portion of her collection.  

The back third I found much easier to grasp and written with the tone more tranquil than the front portion.  One short offering, more an image, fit my situation at the moment I read it.  No need for a dictionary or encyclopedia for this one and the others in this section.  And that for me made this a much more enjoyable time of reading.  Poetry seems to require a knowledge of the poet’s mind and life and for that to intersect with the reader’s for it to communicate clearly.
               Red and black
               the lake behind the eyelids
               where the thought that it’s better
               to do nothing live.  (90)

The back cover of this small collection may give the reader more confidence to read the works Prikryl offers to the public than I have here.  Read that, balance it with what little I have said, and then decide on your course.

This book was provided by the publisher in return for a review.

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