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Reviewed by Marta Tandori for Readers' Favorite
Eloquence That Feeds the Soul should be the subtitle for A Sword Song for Blood Roses, a poignant offering of poems by Joan Wiley. While relatively short insofar as books go, A Sword Song for Blood Roses definitely packs a huge emotional punch. It’s divided into three sections: Part One – Sorrow; Part Two – Hope; and Part Three – Triumph. Each section has an introduction that is insightful, thoughtful, and eloquent while the poems themselves exemplify the struggles, triumphs, and emotions of the human spirit. Her carefully chosen words are both lyrical and evocative, tantalizing the senses, while the pages are strewn with sketches that leap off the page.
“Evil” – A little bit of evil resides in everyone. Scrape some off with a wicked tongue. Stir up poison and pass the cup. “Wrong” – That old feeling rose inside her again, the one that said she wasn’t enough. The one that squeezed her chest and burned the back of her eyes, reminding her she didn’t matter. She had done nothing to make a difference. “Loneliness” – She was set apart from the ones who jumped in and out of her life, never understanding why they would not stay, dismissing her loyalty and kindness and all she freely gave. Little did she understand it was not her ways that drove them from her side, but the mettle of her nature. “Responsibility” – If you choose to blame others for your circumstances and your failures, neither do you have the power of ownership for your successes, Responsibility has a double edge; and “Valor” – Finding the will to survive the worst life throws at you is a kind of courage not many talk about. To keep going, keep living, when you want to die is the valor of the soul no one will know about you…
Life is an intricately woven tapestry of emotional struggles and triumphs and with A Sword Song for Blood Roses, Wiley speaks to our turmoils and taps into our strengths as human beings. For those who love the power and beauty of words, this is one book of poems that should not be missed.