#PoeticMuses: Cosmosis by Stefanie Briar proves love comes and goes in an expansive universal truth

As most of you know, my favorite month of the year is National Poetry month. I celebrate it every year both here and on my personal social media pages. Why? Well, poets are just underrated but they say things we wish more people would just come out with. I love how immediate and succint writing poetry feels and when someone reads it if they feel the power in your words, the entire poem speaks volumes and all the feelings come full circle. So powerful and as with all writing both brave and vulnerable as well.

The thing I love about writing poetry is that there are less rules. You can format it however you want, and even make grammatical errors part of the poem as well.

When reading poetry, I find solace in the short but staggered rhythm of lyrics and words that leave me feeling lifted, understood, and less alone.

I found Stefanie Briar’s work during one of my curiousity sprees (when I am venturing down the many rabbit holes of Instagram) where I search online for salve for the wounds of my human frailty.

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Cosmosis uses the metaphor that our universe grows and expands with each act of love even if lost or toxic.

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It is brilliantly organized in four sections:

  • Solar Flare
  • Supernova
  • Black Hole
  • Eclipse

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The poetry in each centers from the gravitational pull of its theme my two favorites were Solar Flare and Black Hole because like this poet, I have loved, and I have felt the blackest hole of love lost.

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20200822_184838This one is probably my favorite if I had to pick one…although every poem here is so powerfully poignant and original.

 

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You can join the conversation and find new poetry shared often via her Instagram pagewhich impressively has over 20,000 followers in the six months since she joined the platform (Stefanie, please sprinkle some of your magic voodoo dust on my Instagram, please).

And it’s easy to see why she has so many fans. Her words are sharp and spoil-proof. Yet, if you message her, she will message you back within hours. She’s genuinely super supportive of other poets and writers, and she’s also got amazing taste in music.

According to her author bio on the back of her debut poetry book, she lives in New Jersey with her husband, young daughter, python, and cat-sized rabbit. She teaches 10th grade English and coaches cheerleading.

You can purchase a copy of the Barnes & Noble Press poetry bestseller Cosmosis here. 

Her second book of poetry is due out on New Year’s Day 2021. 2021 is already looking promising if you ask me.

 

#PoeticMuses: Under The Shade of the Banyan Tree by Simi K. Rao

I was asked to read this book of poetry and some prose for an honest review. Once received, I was unsure of what I would find under this tree of metaphorical significance but I am happy to share not only did I find myself lost in the midst of some of these poems…that share bits of truth about self-confidence, sefl-esteem, and one that cleverly tells the story of a seed of doubt.

My favorite of all Rao’s words shared within the pages of this collection is called Love is.

I also enjoyed the excerpt from Inconvenient Relations, Rao’s novel.

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Enter Giveaway Here. Ends May 10, 2020

Read some of my favorites below.

i purge my mind with music I rejoice in the space until the creatures cruise back in on roller skates

I am Abnormal Unconventional Abominable Unafraid Aberrant Unapologetic

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Words are bland unless spiced with emotion Prayer means less unless said with devotion Love is an empty pot unless filled with trust

Spontaneous Instantaneous No instruction required When it reaches the eyes, it spreads like the flu Contagious Infectious The universal language of a smile.

#PoeticMuses: Beyond Worthy by Jacqueline Whitney

Coming out of the other side of trauma is the part people notice. They didn’t notice you within the trauma feeling stuck, losing the fuel to your fire, losing the best parts of you to appease those people who were absolutely blind to your worth.

They didn’t notice when you were broken and reaching out to everyone and everything to help you understand the pain that had doubled you over. That made you think that this was it. The story was over, and no one checked in or showed up for you like you did for them, you turned to a higher power and internal healing, and to be free of the pain you had to let go of what or who was holding you back.

Then, dead on arrival, the truth, the clarity washes over you and you come out strong. Like a phoenix you rise and begin to fly.

And when you rise, you help others like you heal.

For me, that is the poetry of Jacqueline Whitney. It is written from a place of severe trauma, from a place where people say something is wrong with you because you are depressed  and only see darkness, and from a place where light washes over you in streams and waves until the darkness flees from you, and the place you are stuck in, becomes the place where you danced right out of the flames.

It was everything I didn’t know I needed post-trauma. And I thank her for putting her words, her heart, her story out into the world because they helped me heal even more.

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You can connect with Jacqueline via Instagram and even find a link to purchase her very vital book of poetry.

Below are some of my favorites of hers.

The more we try to make sense of the memories or the current moment that doesn't make sense, the more we lose ourselves and our healing. There are some experiences that just aren't ever going to make sense, and ma

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You only live once.

You were created for nothing mediocre. You are meant to tear down walls with your heart, push through oceans with your voice, and love all souls with all of your soul. You were made to love. You were made to stand

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There is absolutely nothing wrong with you

Progress can be measured in breaths. You are still breathing, therefore, you are making progress. -Beyond Worthy by Jacqueline Whitney

Being you is enough. You don't have to explain yourself to anyone. You don't have to defend where you are. You are where you are, and that is where you need to be right now. -Beyond Worthy by Jacqueline Whitney

 

#PoeticMuses: Poetry Review Mike Mac’s Of Welter and Whim

Poetry has always struck a chord with me. I was a poet before I became a novelist but it is rare among all of today’s modern poets that poetry strikes both a chord and a nerve.

Yet, Mike Mac’s poetry did just that like a strum of guitar chords among a thumping bass, it reads like a musical accompaniment any person may need to dance in the key of life.

I was asked to read this book for an honest review and am glad I took the leap and the chance to do so.

His topics range from love and relationships to powerful poetic statements.

Some of my favorites are below.

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Purchase this and Mike Mac’s other poetry collection here

She Had Gone I could no more outrun thoughts of her then I could outrun the rain And I would have it no other way

I was unable to disuade my eyes from her. She was extraordinary. A serendipitous confluence of quirk. An ethereal sumphony of vitality amidst the dull drone of our doom. A windfall of cosmic liberty in stark defia

I could never lose someone as much as I lost you. -Of Welter and Whim, Mike Mac

Her words were curt,irate, and keen primed for print in a rolled up magazine Mike Mac, Of Welt and Whim

She was both fire and flame but never the same -Of Welter and Whim, Mike Mac

My casket will bear the corpses of a man and his remorses

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I saw vultures in her eyes circling overhead I knew that I had died when she left me for dead

He was big headed And small minded A walking contradiction And a running joke

 

I let you walk all over me but next time I'm going to be a Lego Of Welter and whim, Mike Mac

If only truth had the endurance of gossip -Of Welter and Whim by Mike Mac

I have an exorbitant literacy rate -Of Welter and Whim by Mike Mac

 

#PoeticMuses: Calling All Poets and Poetry Book Authors

The Smart Cookie Philes needs you!

Send me an email below or at smartcookiepr26@gmail.com and I will review your book for FREE during the month of April and also offer FREE social media promotion!

Happy National Poetry Month to any and all poets!

#PoeticMuses: Your Heart Is The Sea by Nikita Gill

Naturally, I was floored when Thought Catalog reached out to me directly as someone they thought of to review Nikita Gill’s newest poetry collection. They sent me the book and from the second I opened it I had trouble putting it down. It was like slow waves that wash over you as you stand upon the ocean’s edge. Your toes sink into the sand as you step deeper and deeper into the water, wading into it until the bravest parts of you are under water and only your head is above.

The water gets rougher and you must fight against the current beneath you.

That is what this poetry book explores. The struggles we suffer within ourselves so the poetry book reads like you are taking a deep sea dive into the depths of your heart and soul.

It is complete and utter inked beauty and leaves you feeling at peace upon closing the back cover, much like a day spent upon the water does or sitting listening to the ocean waves crashing on a sandy beach. The salt air does wonders for the human heart, and this book is no exception to that notion. I recommend everyone read this much like I would recommend taking a cruise vacation or booking a weekend getaway to stay near the beach.

 

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WHY ARE WE ALL AFRAID TO BE? A poem about how the world makes you feel less than you are or small as person.

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I NAMED US GRIEF: a poem about wanting to be with someone or not being right for someone but you still wear black and mourn them as if a part of you has died.

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For additional poems from Nikita Gill’s poetry book Your Heart is the Sea, please follow the Smart Cookie on Instagram and Twitter.

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#NationalPoetryMonth .@langleav’s poetry is a siren song for good in #Lullabies

Lang Leav returns with a second book of poetry that is made to sit beside your bed on the nightstand almost like a sort of dream-catcher to sing you to sleep when sleep is hard to come by.

Lullabies showcases a stronger writer as Leav’s poetry in this collection is very melancholy but highly emotive.

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One of my favorites in this collection is Her Words because it is a poem about a girl who writes, need I say more.

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#NationalPoetryMonth .@LangLeav ‘s #loveandmisadventure is a siren song for love lost and the hope of a future love that lasts

When I was a junior in college, I finally had my own room for the first time in my life.

Naturally, I was excited for how I would decorate my sacred dwelling since the choice was solely mine.

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I decided I wanted to have a poetry wall in one corner of my room and who’s poetry was showcased along the long wall near my door but the Tumblr poet, Lang Leav. Soon after this, I found out she was publishing her first poetry book and I was totally stoked for her as I had followed her literary career from the ground up.

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Boasting hand-drawn artwork and poetry from the author, Love & Misadventure is a book anyone who is hopeful for love despite all their misadventures and mistakes in love should own, and wants to reminisce every emotion that entails.

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#NationalPoetryMonth: Don’t Resist the Rebellion that engulfs you while reading Nikita Gill’s #WildEmbers

I admit to Instagram stalking Nikita Gill and her poetry.

The first time I ever read a poem by Ms. Gill I was in awe.

Then, a few months later, NetGalley sent me an email blast to tease new books

Normally, I delete them without reading because I have a queue of 80 books, do I really need anymore books?

The voice in my head always whispers, “Yes!”

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This time I was glad I opened it as I had the chance to read Nikita Gill’s book Wild Embers.

Since this National Poetry Month, I figured this was the perfect time to share my review and reaction to Wild Embers.

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Basically, it is a well-rounded book of poetry. There was only like five poems I did not read but skim so that to me says that the sparks I was ingesting lit a fire within me that I felt the burn within each sinew of my bones.

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And I remembered my identity: a supernova burning bright to discover pathways and planets uncharted, in order to make a new way for those that come after me.

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My absolute favorite poem in the collection was this one because it made me cry which sometimes leads to a clearer perspective:

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With Rupi Kaur’s second poetry collection, she is the Sun and we, her flowers #NationalPoetryMonth

I’ll be honest, I’m not Rupi Kaur’s biggest fan

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I definitely came around to seeing her talent more so with her second poetry collection The Sun and Her Flowers

With this collection, Rupi discusses some of the relationship she delved into in Milk and Honey but in more of a metaphorical way with talking between the lines about the aftershocks of love (especially love that doesn’t last) instead of a literal way with imagery of sex.

It is apparent that Kaur believes sex equals love in some shape or form, but she does do a fantastic job of discussing society’s perception of using sex to get someone to love you, when they are all wrong for you.

Discussed in this poetry collection are themes of love, grief, self-abandonment, honoring one’s roots, and empowering oneself.

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My favorite poem in the entire collection was “What Love Looks Like” because of the word choice Kaur uses to poetic describe love by using dialogue she may or may have actually had within the walls of a therapist’s office.

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So many women have daddy issues because their dad didn’t give them love in a healthy way which makes young girls go out for looking for love in all the wrong faces, and almost becoming society’s biggest joke because of it.

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Love sometimes gives us all rose-colored glasses but the worst part of heartbreak is having to remove them and come to terms with the reality that you fell in love with an idea of someone who didn’t really exist. And that hurts you more than them because you almost feel as though you can’t trust your own judgement anymore for a while.