Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
The basic elements are life are really quite simple. Or at least they should be. Perhaps this is the beauty of Haiku poetry - the ability of a creative thought transpiring through marginality of vocabulary. Yet, it's not really marginal. Each word, each syllable, has to be carefully plotted like a clever mathematical equation. It's stripping the complexity of the written word down to the bare bones of expression, using the multiple meanings of each word to convey a very complex message.
"Small hours contract with
ticking minds but expansive
minutes stride gently"
Author and poet Mark Anthony Smith usually prefers to write prose, with its thick, intense scenes and compelling plot lines. But here, in a very structured form of three lines, following the basic Haiku principal of 5 syllables/ 7 syllables/ 5 syllables, the poet tucks multiple meanings and sentiments into a very short piece. The powerful message here, of time and space, and the basic concept of time and how the mind exists in time, makes the reader pensive. Indeed the reader's mind starts ticking with expansive minutes.
Smith has presented the reader with an intense collection of his Haiku poems in Hearts of the Matter. Coupled with simple drawings to set the scene, the words provoke deeper thought and, at times, just admire the simple pleasure of life itself.
"Bronzed leaves leaving gusts
momentously free-fall short
brushing between howls"
This is an interesting collection of Haiku poetry delving into the joys of life's simple moments. A simple form for what should be simple joys. This little collection will serve to inspire over and over again and help the reader find a gentler sense of existence and experience the pure joy of life itself.