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Reviewed by Rich Follett for Readers' Favorite
A Time to Cry: A Poetic Memoir of Madness, Depression, and Unrequited Love by Paul Kloschinsky is exactly what the title suggests: a brooding, introspective, and cathartic journey through depression, lost love, and unfulfilled promises. Those in the throes of this unholy trilogy of debilitating conditions will find ample comfort in Kloschinsky’s lean, brutally honest poems – the comfort (for which there is no substitute) of knowing that they are not alone in their agony. If misery loves company, then A Time to Cry: A Poetic Memoir of Madness, Depression, and Unrequited Love is the best companion imaginable.
Although Kloschinsky’s point of view is consistently dire and dark, hope runs like a silver thread through each of the well-crafted poems in this fearless collection. From “Putrefaction”: “All I can hope/is that the decomposing remains/make good soil,/and I can sprinkle a few seeds/to sprout with a fresh new start/in some distant day.” This poet’s tortured soul, in all of its abject despair and endless futility, is always looking up. The message is unmistakable: never give in and never, never, give up. In this regard, Paul Kloschinsky’s work will prove inspirational to many.
A Time to Cry is a scholarly work, with many sophisticated, poignant, mythological references and allusions to characters from classical works. This scholarship is delivered in small but impeccably placed doses, the result being that readers will never feel looked down upon or condescended to. Kloschinsky’s scholarship is framed by a marked bent toward the spiritual, which gives the collection a feeling of importance and permanence. From “A Traditional Club”: “I know some would/worship him in a church/but I would prefer to worship him/in a glorious sunrise.”
As long as the sun continues to rise, with all of its hope and promise, Paul Kloschinsky’s keen poetic eye will be there to capture its reverie for the downhearted. A Time to Cry is a sensitive and timely collection, brutally honest, courageously penned, and triumphantly realized.