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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
Outdoor Adventures, Sacred Trails: Poems of a Traveling Man by Tim Riter is a compilation of the author's original poetry and an ode to the things that he has experienced as he explores the less appreciated true wonders of the world. Riter is as prolific a writer as he is a traveler and the collection presented is reflective of both. The quantity approaches a centenary with pieces ranging in style and length from the simply structured Haiku called Sierra Heaven?, to the free-form twenty-two verse, five stanza poem named Jeremiah Johnson and its structural composition that takes the shape of staggered steps. Free-form without a discernible rhyme scheme is the primary style of Riter's writing in this book and each piece is allocated its own page in order to stand proudly on its own.
Reviewing poetry can be tricky because, like all visual forms of art, it is entirely subjective. This is compounded when it is about personal experiences and Outdoor Adventures, Sacred Trails is the entire theme of Tim Riter's collection. It is the written embodiment of a lifetime of experiences while traveling. Thankfully, it's a good compilation of work that is mainstream in how it views what Riter does well to describe. It's succinct and thoughtful. I don't know anyone who doesn't love trees and would turn down an opportunity to drive through California's Redwood forests. I'm perhaps impartial, having a wife who grew up within a morning's drive from them and they are majestic to a spectacular degree, but I can assure you that the feelings described in A Sacred Place are universal. Overall, this is a lovely compilation and a genuine pleasure to read. Recommended.