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Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite
How Many Pizzas Are on Venus by Scot MacKinnon is a collection of poems that cover a wide range of themes and topics, at times capturing the significant moments in the life of the poet and at times leaving readers with the feeling of an intimate encounter with the poet. The poems reflect on the author’s life and capture sentiments he had, even from the tender age of five when he wished “he wasn’t even alive,” and move on to mature themes like love and lust. As one reads through the poems, one gets a vivid glimpse of the psyche of the poet, the sense of self-worth, the fears and thrills of life and humanity that punctuate each of the lines.
I adored the simplicity in style in How Many Pizzas Are on Venus and loved how the author narrates scenes and episodes from life in some of the poems. The first poem describes their craft, how they receive their inspiration, and moves on gradually from the intimate experiences of thought to encounters with others. The poems are both intimate and universal and as the reader listens to the poet’s experience, they hear and see themselves in the poems. I could relate to lines like: “My mind never seems to rest, it’s like it’s on its own quest. / Sometimes there’s more than one voice talking in my head, / But it’s okay, they will rest when I am dead.” Scot MacKinnon’s style is simple and it shows that poetry can be written into any experience. The symbolism like the “first flower” permeates the poems and lifts them to a deeper level of meaning and interpretation. An enjoyable collection of simply written, yet soul-stirring poems.