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Reviewed by Joshua Soule for Readers' Favorite
“But I retreated back to my cave where a small fire was lit and I could see the shadow of my former self.” Tinkering is a collection of poetry written by Edward M. Donnelly. Each of the approximately forty poems differs greatly from one another, and Donnelly beautifully illustrates many powerful concepts including love, grief, humor, and aging as he “tinkers” with his image of people and life. One particular poem, entitled “Love”, speaks of two turtles making their way toward each other no matter how long it takes. Each poem in Donnelly’s chapbook successfully paints an image and will fill you with thought and wonder. The title Tinkering refers to one of the poems in Donnelly’s chapbook, in which he illustrates struggles with thought and focus and the isolation that comes with it.
Poetry lovers need to read Tinkering. I was very pleased with the way each poem took me into a different world of thought and imagination. I felt sorrow, joy, and wonder, and even smiled a few times as I read through Donnelly’s collection of poetry; in fact, I read it twice and found it just as powerful the second time. Each of Donnelly’s poems, though short, conveys the depths of his emotion as he wrote. Lines such as “To the town folks, he was the enemy, but in his shrouded heart, he had love that the world will never see,” have the ability to inspire and motivate anyone who reads Tinkering. Donnelly has an excellent talent at “tinkering” with the imagination, a skill he no doubt developed during his experience as a teacher. I look forward to more poetic work from Edward M. Donnelly.