Take Time For A Stroll

Poetry - General
76 Pages
Reviewed on 04/06/2014
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Joy Hannabass for Readers' Favorite

Author Ronald Gifford grew up in a time when things were much quieter and at a much slower pace. No internet, cell phones, and TVs; and Boom-boxes were not around. A time when it definitely didn’t take as much money as it does today because living was just cheaper in the 1920s and 1930s. And can you imagine 10 cents a week for allowance? It would take forever just to save up for a Dr. Pepper and a snack! In Take Time for a Stroll, Mr. Gifford brings back many of these memories through poetry.

These are the days during which my parents were born, and my grandparents were young couples with small children. Hearing them talk about their early years is one reason I wanted to read this book of poems. Take Time for a Stroll brings back a lot of those stories told by my family members. Each poem takes readers back to a different memory, and I really enjoyed reading them all. One of my favorites is the poem titled “Take Time for a Stroll,” and here are a few of the beginning lines of the poem. You need to read the book for the entire poem, along with so many other wonderful poems!
In simpler times there were simpler ways
Quieter nights, more carefree days
Music was played on the stand in the park
Children chased fireflies on the grass, after dark

Have we time to notice? Watch clouds as they go
Waves lapping the shore, footsteps crunching in snow
Watch squirrels at play, the moonlight on a calm sea
Breathe in some fresh air, nap under a tree.

And this is only a very small touch of what is in this wonderful book of poetry. If you enjoy reading poems, and especially enjoy a nice relaxing book that will sure calm you, you will really enjoy Take Time for a Stroll. This is a book you will find yourself reading over and over again. And one thing I love about poems is that you can read one or many, whatever you have time for.

Kelly Santana

Take Time For A Stroll by Ronald M. Gifford is an autobiographical poetry book. The poetry is dedicated to a time where there was no public transportation, very little stress, and the pace of life was slow. Ronald M. Gifford took his own personal experiences to reflect on how people were considerate of others and used to appreciate the simple things in life. He went on to talk about his past loves, marriage, separation, children, past friendships, young adventures, work, and exploring nature. Mr. Gifford told stories of animals, cowboys, waiters, and ordinary people who crossed his life and in some way left a mark on it.

Take Time For A Stroll is refreshing reading. In the form of a poem, Mr. Gifford made interesting parallels between the era in which he grew up and nowadays. The language is simple and direct, making it easy to read. Mr. Gifford referred to a lot of nature elements in this piece; a point that I especially enjoyed for that brings a soothing tone to the book. It also helped connect with the simplicity of the old times he mentioned. Another high note of the book was Mr. Gifford’s sound advice about life. From the appreciation of things to a simple act of kindness, his poetry brought invaluable lessons that most people can relate to and anybody can use. Inspirational, for those who like poems with a mist of simplicity and realism, this is a great read.

Faridah Nassozi

Take Time For A Stroll by Ronald M. Gifford is a collection of poems talking about how easy life was before when simple things were all that mattered. Back then, it was about enjoying life in its simplest form, but now life just passes us by as we rush through everything, chasing endless goals. The poems talk about the basic values of a good life; working hard, having a positive attitude - even when things do not go your way - learning from your mistakes, and most importantly always sparing a moment to take it all in and enjoy life. The poems tell a beautiful story about life, love, and the simple things that make it all worth it. It is about celebrating life, having some fun, and laughing a little. The poems highlight how much life has changed and what we miss out on every day simply because we do not appreciate the simple things in life.

The poems in Take Time For A Stroll are a description of life as it was back then. The beautiful descriptions of the land and the animals that call it home, and the fresh air, which we either do not have anymore or never take time to notice, make you pause for a moment just so you can take it in. Reading the poems makes you envy the people who lived then and enjoyed such a simple and beautiful life. It makes you forget about modern technology and the gadgets that we think we cannot live without, and makes you realise that what really matters is not possessions and achievements but life itself. It also acknowledges that sometimes life might not go as planned and there will be some tough times, but the important thing is to keep going and not give up, believing that tomorrow will be better and working hard to ensure that it is. The poems are uplifting and soothing.

Lit Amri

“Back in the 1920s and 1930s when I was a boy, the world was much bigger. It was a quieter world and turned a lot slower. People weren't in such a hurry to get where they were going and they got there just the same. It was a time when people enjoyed life without TVs, PCs, Boom-Boxes, Jet Planes and had very little if any money in their pockets, hard to imagine.“ Ronald M. Gifford’s Take Time For A Stroll reflects his sentiments on the quieter times perfectly. His outlook on this matter is understandable and he paints it beautifully through his poems.

Take Time For A Stroll begins with ‘Path’; “I am walking a path, to I know not where / It’s an early spring day, I haven’t a care / I hike right along at a steady pace / Things look familiar, do I know this place”. Gifford’s prose is simple, yet flawlessly and vividly illustrates the scenery for readers to imagine in their minds. After some time, I realize that I’m also reading Gifford’s life stories through these poems and not just expressive poetry about the serene past.

All the poems are poignant and easy to read but I’m mostly connected with ‘Some Words, To A Friend’ – an encouragement to stay on life’s journey, no matter how tough it can be. Overall, this is a collection of poems that bring back memories of the quieter, more tranquil era including the poet’s own stories. I greatly enjoyed it and it is an absolute praiseworthy collection of poems from Mr. Gifford.

Mamta Madhavan

Take Time For A Stroll by Ronald M. Gifford is a collection of poetry where the poet reminisces about his life in the 1920s and '30s. Most of the poems are based on his memories of when the world was a better place to live. The author has captured those moments of his life and put them down for readers to feel and enjoy. Though the poems are set in the 1920s and '30s, the writing is relevant, even in this era. The depth, fluidity, and rhyme scheme will make it a good read for all poetry lovers.

The poems are endearingly nostalgic, though not sentimental. The poems follow an effective rhyme scheme without sounding forced. The poet speaks about diverse topics and his imagery is crisp and wonderful. All the nature poems are vivid in their descriptions, leaving readers to visualize the moment. One of my favorite nature poems is 'Winter.' The craftsmanship combined with expression and the beauty of the words is a reflection of the author's masterly work. The poems are simple but thought provoking. 'Christmas In The Valley' is another joyous poem that captures the essence of the season.

The poet's bonding with nature and his immense love for it is evident in many of his writings. The author uses wit, harmony, rhyming, and humor to enhance the figurative aspects of writing. Overall, it is a good collection where the textures and themes vary, making the words effective and enjoyable to readers.