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Healing Yesterday’s Tears

Author Kyli Santiago’s life is one from which we can all learn. Fortunately, she has shared much of her experience with readers in the form of poetry. Santiago’s poems cover every topic, from depression to single motherhood. Within Santiago’s work, there is a prominent theme of overcoming adversity and bouncing back time and time again from situations that would break the strongest among us.

Healing Yesterday’s Tears, by Kyli Santiago, is eye-opening on many levels. First, I appreciated the real and raw emotions conveyed through her verse. Reading Santiago’s poetry is like looking through the window to her soul. Second, I found her words to be powerful and moving. The poems addressing depression explore truly dark and hurtful places, but Santiago always manages to show readers her own path toward hope. Many readers who are seeking words of encouragement will find her work difficult to read but inspiring all the same.

There is no better place to find a shining example of self-discovery than Santiago’s work. She leaves nothing to the imagination and provides highly relatable situations, including deception in relationships and sexually violent experiences. Her work gives hope to readers and shows them that the most adverse conditions can be overcome.

Santiago always leaves readers feeling strengthened and emboldened to meet obstacles head-on. I highly recommend Santiago’s work to anyone looking for the inspiration to love themselves again. Readers will appreciate the openness displayed in Santiago’s work. Learning through adversity is one of the most challenging processes, but Santiago has mastered it–we are fortunate she has been led to share her experiences with the world.

Healing Yesterday’s Tears: An Inspiring Poetry Book about Overcoming Emotion and Discovering Love of Self is a beautifully written book of poetry that contains some triggering situations related to suicide and intimate relationships, but each poem paves a path filled with strength and hope for readers.

Pages: 77 | ASIN : B09GNTJGKX

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Awaken! A Collection of Poems is a chapbook written by Sylvia Sánchez Garza. This emotionally-charged collection is filled with poems covering topics like nature, the pandemic, immigration, social injustice, love and family, and deeply personal feelings that readers from all over will be able to relate to. This short collection has twenty-five poems and a glossary for those who do not understand the Spanish words included in the poetry. Each poem will leave the reader with something to think about.

Nature is one of the main themes in this collection, and many of the author’s poems use nature to express her thoughts on the world and what is happening. Two poems that I felt connected humans and nature well are Dance and Delusional Dream. Dance is a profound poem, taking a look at life from a flying bug. While the exact insect is not named, the perspective is eye-opening. Humans forget when they view these dancing bugs as an annoyance to their outdoor experience, these bugs have a short life span, and the outdoors is their only home. Fly swatters, and bug zappers take these creatures’ joy and short life away. With such a short time to live, they should dance and love just as we like to. Moving right from the fragile life of bugs, readers are given a poem on the fragility of human life. This heartbreaking poem talks about the pandemic and how much was lost during this time, human lives, dreams, experiences, and just living their lives.

Some of the other thought-provoking topics that Garza explores include immigration, migrant workers, fear, and the politics surrounding these issues. The poem Soar With The Angles made me cry. The words are chosen so artfully that each strike at different emotions. This poem says what so many have felt, and their voices went unheard when the events surrounding George Floyd occurred.

Not all the poems are dark or sad. Mr. Sunshine turns a gray morning rain into a thing of beauty and something to be welcomed and appreciated for its gift. It reminds readers that we must experience rain at times to grow and experience the beauty that the world has to offer us.

Awaken! A Collection of Poems is a beautifully written chapbook that is filled with introspective and passionate works that readers will not forget. Those who enjoy reading current and relevant poetry on contemporary society will find this expressive collection moving and filled with passion.

Pages: 44 | ASIN : B09N6QLQBG

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Peace in the Midst of the Storm

Author Kaleb Thompson’s Peace in the Midst of the Storm is a poetry collection that aims to inspire others, offering sanctuary to readers going through life’s crises. This collection is based on religious beliefs and seeks to glorify God and exalt the human spirit. The writer captures the universal experiences of despair, stress, and not knowing where to turn while offering religious-based solutions to navigating these dark times in life.

These poems contain powerful and evocative images; the opening poem describes a peaceful place “my life will soon leap into.” I feel, at times, these poems would benefit from being simplified. Some lines are so long that the rhyme scheme is partially lost or muddled. Nonetheless, there is a promise of healing within these poems through moments of original phrasing and Thompson’s positive, supportive messaging. One message that stood out to me is that we are not who we were in the past, our future can be different, and we have the power to change our lives.

The poem “Blame” really struck me. The lines “A mature young man in the midst of grown adults who don’t know how / and when to grow up is not only surprising, it’s disturbing.” I see this attitude almost every day, at work, in stores, and even at children’s sports games. How can children learn to live in a Godly way when the example set before them is the exact behavior they are told to correct?

This collection is for those passionate about their religious beliefs and who have a strong faith background. The poetry is religious; there are explicit calls to prayer, alongside a sense of owing life’s successes to God. Through God, readers will find a path to overcoming anxiety, fear, a broken and troubled spirit, and an uplifting message of hope. The uplifting energy of this collection and Thompson’s attempt to reach out to the downtrodden are admirable.

Peace in the Midst of the Storm is a collection of poetry that will help guide readers into the light from the darkness that has built up inside them. This inspirational anthology will give readers hope and encouragement to find the best inside of themselves with the help of God.

Pages: 88 | ASIN : B09PSTJPH8

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A Poetic Spanking

A Poetic Spanking by Anthony Toomer is a compilation of free verse poems that explore a variety of topics from faith, love, and contemporary societal issues that are occurring within the black community.

Toomer’s writing is potent and really opens the readers eyes to the power of prayer. The author also sheds light on many social issues such as the Black Lives Matter movement and the various injustices that African Americans face today.

Toomer’s poems are diverse and range from preaching the word of God, to poems of love, to poems that sounded like music lyrics. There is a fervor to Toomer’s words that is easily felt and makes each poem feel profound as well as spiritual.

While this collection explores spirituality, I appreciate that the author does not force his faith upon the reader and does not try to convince the reader to become followers of God. Instead the author shares his knowledge and his strength in his faith with readers through his poetry.

Author Anthony Toomer is an artist and this shows in his poems. While the poetry was stirring all on its own, I would have liked to have seen some imagery along with the poems; just something to break up the blocks of poetry. But this is a minor point for a collection that I heartily enjoyed reading.

The author’s acknowledgements before the start of the book allows readers to see the real Toomer as he shares a bit about himself. I was not sure how the title fit the poems, but after finishing the book I can officially say Toomer has delivered a poetic spanking.

A Poetic Spanking is an eloquent and thoughtful collection of poetry that I highly recommend to poetry lovers who are looking for an impassioned and inspiring read.

Pages: 160 | ASIN: B093B1PYGG

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From Dusk to Dawn

From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life by Henry Krauss is a unique poetry collection that manages to merge marvelous depictions of natural phenomena, family life, personal dramas, grief, and loss. The short verses are accompanied by photography and illustrations that match each poem’s scenario. With a picture of icicles slowly thawing in winter, a picture of an elegant elderly lady, an ominous ICU ward, or a chirping bird together, they conjure a picturesque, almost bucolic aesthetic.

Perhaps this piece of literature’s most distinctive feature is the author’s remarkable universal knowledge. From chemistry to biological sciences, politics, and history, the author shows confidence in mixing elements of different areas of knowledge between the lines. Especially noteworthy are the In the Eyes of the Beholder and “Gennie” poems.

In In the Eyes of the Beholder, Krauss vividly describes a hospital intensive care unit that houses two patients. One patient likely has a benign diagnosis, and one who is likely terminal, showing himself to be quite knowledgeable in the field of medicine and familiar with such a clinical setting and its ambiance and the complications faced by patients in it.

“Gennie,” on another subject, touches upon the topic of slavery in America and its consequences that permeate time and still pose hurdles to people of color to the present day.

The author’s sensitivity in describing the female figure is also heartwarming. In the last poem of the anthology, Krauss presents his Aunt Esther in a homonymous work: she is described as a resilient elderly woman whose memory is held close by the author, a refreshing depiction of the feminine written by a male author.

From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life is a thought-provoking poetry collection. With an expansive range of topics, readers from all walks of life will find something that resonates with them in this impassioned book.

Pages: 64 | ASIN : B09D7HCKWP

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A Life’s Tapestry

A Life’s Tapestry by Patricia Stanway is a collection of poetry pertaining to the lifelong pursuits and themes of sensuality, love, family, music, searching, loss and pain, discovery, and so much more.

This poetry collection was crafted in such a way that only someone who has lived life to the fullest can capture in words the deep emotions that are experienced and portray them in a manner that readers will connect with. A Life’s Tapestry was structured in a way to illustrate the different seasons of life. The seasons of sorrow and joy are interwoven together to tell a beautiful, fascinating, and complete story. In these poems, Stanway paints vivid imagery and writes poignant thoughts, detailing moments lived and imagined in order to fully captivate the reader, drawing them into the moment. 

The selection of poems that the author has chosen to include in this collection is exquisite in artistry and refreshing to read. When reading through the poetry, the themes that are revealed show Stanway has experienced much in her life. Her works of poetry act as a reflection upon those defining moments. Even people who are new to reading poetry will be interested in reading through Stanway’s collection by stepping into her shoes and experiencing life through the eyes. Readers will be delighted by Stanway’s insight into her life and the colorful wording of her pieces. Simply put, this collection of poetry is a work of art, highlighting moments of pure joy and sorrow, causing the reader to smile, cry, and laugh as they read through each entry. 

A Life’s Tapestry is a raw emotional collection of poetry that highlights the vulnerability and genius of the poet. The writing is thought-provoking and addresses many situations that all human beings experience in the journey of life. 

Pages: 134 | ASIN : B09B3CJG9L

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Clouded Thoughts

The hassle of a daily commute, the often delayed appreciation for our parents, the danger of defining yourself by others’ standards- all of these subjects and more are tackled by author Michael Froilan in his poetry collection Clouded Thoughts. Froilan hits the ground running from the first page, jumping headfirst into poems that display a refreshing honesty, not to mention more than their fair share of vulnerability. While some of the poems read quickly and then float away with the breeze, some stay with you well after you’ve turned the page.

Clouded Thoughts has its pages filled with almost as many styles as it does subjects. Froilan writes poems that read like a paragraph, ones with a rhyming pattern, and some as short as a single thought. His shortest ones are, in fact, some of the strongest and are reminiscent of daily affirmations, words to be spoken in the mornings as intentions for the day. Likewise, the tone of the poems is all over the spectrum. There is no shortage of “chip on the shoulder” cynicism to be found here, but in equal turns are the many that are uplifting and inspiring.

Froilan manages to find the balance between social commentary and political statements, a precarious line that not many can navigate. Many of his poems bring current events and societal issues to light but never once does he beat you over the head with them, preferring, it would seem, to make his points with a degree of subtlety. 

Although many of the poems in this collection are written with a sense of level-headed realism, a few employ imagery and analogy to elevate them to an another level. Lines such as “My pillows are covered in dreams and anxiety, What a surprise, I can’t fall asleep” paint such a vivid picture of the writer’s struggles at that moment and does so in an artfully entertaining way. These moments shine and show Froilan’s writing at its best.

Clouded Thoughts is a thought-provoking and engaging collection of poetry. Even through the cynicism and the angst, the resounding message is to love yourself, trust yourself, and define yourself on your terms only. The urging for self-confidence shines through even in the poems that don’t address it, making the book an unexpected comfort.

Pages: 102 | ASIN : B08WP8N2GN

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Scatter Seeds of Kindness

Author K.A Bloch’s Scatter Seeds of Kindness is a book full of heartwarming and inspiring poems. The author covers various topics, including family, friendship, love, loss, societal expectations, and even bullying. Ultimately, her poems make you reflect on what’s truly important in life and how to ensure you never lose sight of it. They also help you empathize with others while still taking care of yourself.

Apart from poems, this book also contains prose explaining the stories and inspiration behind the poems. While some are rooted in the author’s personal experiences, some seem to have just come to her.

Whichever poem or story you read through, there’s clearly some intimacy there. You can see how they can apply to your own life or that of a loved one. Even when the author talks about challenging subject matter such as death and loss, you are not overwhelmed by despair. Instead, you can feel her peace and gratitude for her time with those she loved.

I really connected to one poem ‘Life Lessons outside the Classroom.’ This poem resonates with how I look back on life now. I went to college, but the things I have learned just living far outway anything I could have learned from a classroom. Especially things like dealing with other people and learning how to be a good friend and partner.

In many ways, the author reminds us to be kind to others and ourselves, even in the face of our own darkness. Her writing is light and beautiful, showing some acceptance of the passing of time and the tragedies that come with it. Ultimately, this book is charming, well-written, and extremely easy to read.

Scatter Seeds of Kindness is a beautifully written collection of poetry. Readers looking for an uplifting collection of poetry that encourages kindness to others and oneself will find this book to be a healing oasis amidst the struggles of daily life.

Pages: 83 | ASIN : B09JCJJT4G

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