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Reviewed by Robin Goodfellow for Readers' Favorite
A Taste From The Wine Of Cognition by Alex Gage is a collection of poetry about humanity’s various expressions and oddities, and how these oddities can culminate in something wonderful, as well as tragic. The poems contain various metaphors that may seem a little humorous at first. However, as the reader continues to delve into the phrases, they realize that there is a deep, mindful darkness within each word. From the religious imagery of Electric Elegy, to the comforting phrases in The Best is Yet to Come, each poem challenges the reader to pick up the detail that many others may miss. Like the clarity that drinking wine, or any alcoholic beverage, may give someone, this poetry collection offers a similar addictive quality to it, one that readers will thoroughly enjoy.
One of the poems that I absolutely enjoyed in this collection was one that told the story of a soprano who was killed by her lover. However, even when dying, she still kept singing, as if clinging to life, even though she knew her death was drawing near. And finally, when she did die, I couldn’t help but imagine the echoes of a dark silence, the reverberations of that desperation still haunting the air. Just like with this poem, the collection emanates a morbid resonance between us and our environment. Even so, there is a shimmer of hope at the end, a sort of prayer that we say in order to keep these nightmares away. Though brief in its essence, it conveys a meaning that transcends length. Gage offers words that force the reader to stop and think, to try to figure out the meaning for themselves. While it may be hard to understand, the collection was enjoyable, nonetheless. As such, I would recommend it to fans of Emily Dickinson, as well as poetry lovers in general.