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Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite
Stages: Poetic Observations of Life, Theater and Cancer by Rima Lynn Xiques is a moving collection that captures the different seasons of the author’s life. In a simple and upbeat style, the author takes readers through different experiences, phases, and insights. The author invites readers to look at life through her eyes, sharing thoughts on a variety of issues, including pain, cancer, love, separation, death, hope, and many others. The style is very simple and conversational and, at times, readers feel as if they are listening to a storyteller. Rima Lynn Xiques is a keen observer and it is interesting to see how she captures details, describes encounters, and shares insights about life in some of her poems.
At times, the voice comes out like that of a child, trying to grasp the meaning of life. At times, the reader meets the image of a warrior battling cancer, leaning on faith during the most difficult moments. Some of the lines are very thoughtful and they capture existential themes while underlining how experience can shape us. For instance, in Michael, she writes: “I know a man who loved so strong he could not leave the past, /and life kept leaving him behind because it moved so fast.” I enjoyed some of the poems, the honesty with which the author shares her thoughts and emotions, the unalloyed joy of feeling loved, the exuberance of the life she had during the blessed moments, and the pain of troubling times. Stages: Poetic Observations of Life, Theater and Cancer is a free and spontaneous recording of the different moments of a woman’s journey, punctuated by great images. An interesting read, indeed.