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Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite
Clouded Thoughts by Michael Froilan is a compilation of the author's original poetry with a conscientious reflection of the hamster wheel of day-to-day living, and a general theme of awareness that it does not have to be, and should not be, this way. Froilan is a prolific poet and the book includes dozens of pieces, each in free formatting that ranges in length, tone, and tenor. These include works such as the quick jab of a two-stanza poem called What's What, about the continued personal pursuit of learning, to the lengthier double-paged poem Pulse, and atonement for past transgressions and a promise to be better.
Poetry tends to be tricky to review because, like most true art forms, it is completely subjective. I really like the work of Jackson Pollock whereas my husband is convinced the same painter has the artistic talent of our turtle, Scooter. In a rare juxtaposition, both he and I agree that Michael Froilan has talent. Clouded Thoughts is honest in its depiction of the frailty of the human psyche and its ability to strengthen itself if one is proactive in doing so. Some of the work didn't hit a mark for me but the majority of it did. And then, there are some incredible standouts. Mr. Rogers 2020 is a pointed rebuke of our ambivalence to all that surrounds us. A person sitting on their balcony amidst an assault of voices, visions, and sounds; a mailperson delivering in the throes of a plague; police potentially chasing an innocent minority member, and the smell of pot. These are all bundled into the closing line, “What a beautiful day in the neighbourhood.” It's also a great day to settle in and give Clouded Thoughts a read.