To You With Love

Selected Poems

Poetry - Love/Romance
93 Pages
Reviewed on 08/21/2018
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Author Biography

Inspired by nature and the beauty around him the multi-award winning poet Gary W. Burns started writing poetry at a young age. Early on Gary was able to express his thoughts, ideas and emotions through the vivid imagery of his verse. His poetry has been published in various literary arts journals, anthologies and magazines. He is the author of 10 books of poetry. Through his poems Gary shares his reflections on the many facets of life and on the beauty of nature. The expressiveness of his poetry has been enriched by his wide reading in philosophy and psychology. He has traveled throughout the world and has lived in numerous countries, to include, Italy, Korea, Saudi Arabia and Canada. He has also lived in Hawaii and several other states. Currently, Gary makes his home in Northern Virginia near the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite

Love, nature, wonderment, humanity, and the pulse of life are just a few of the currents that run through the pages of To You With Love: Selected Poems by Gary W. Burns. It is a collection of poetry that celebrates love, the lover, and intimate moments and emotions. In a style that is unique and original, free without losing its music and rhythm, the author invites readers to drink from the wellsprings of love, to celebrate the one they love, to rediscover the beauty of passion, to taste the sweet honeycomb of loving.

The use of metaphor is this poet’s forte and I enjoyed how he allows nature to reflect the climates and seasons of the soul. When he talks about “Wild Flowers,” he evokes something about the simplicity of love and its freedom. “We are all / Wild flowers,” he writes. “Growing / In the field / Of eternity.”

The layout of the poems is striking, telling, and as one reads from poem to poem, and from stanza to stanza, one can feel a movement, strong whispers of something beautiful and noble and fair stirring within their soul. Gary W. Burns transports readers through a huge emotional tide with his poetry and makes them experience the different seasons of love:

“Spring came
In her gentle gender
And bore me a summer
I’ll always remember.”

To You With Love: Selected Poems is a gorgeous offering, poems written about the subject of love and poems that translate the universal sentiments, longings, and aspirations of every heart.

K.C. Finn

To You With Love: Selected Poems is a romantic poetry collection by author Gary W. Burns. Veering between the romantic, the erotic and the abstract, Burns’s work focuses on positive expressions of love, beauty and nature with a view to uplifting its reader. There is a suggestion of suitability for occasions such as weddings, Valentine’s Day and anniversaries. I believe this work would be highly suitable for these purposes, as it leaves no room for any darkness associated with the emotion of love, expressing only the purest and most idealized forms of the emotion. The collection comprises over one hundred pages of loving sentiments in verse.

I can certainly see the wider appeal of To You With Love: Selected Poems. Gary W. Burns writes towards the aspiration of a type of romance that most of us seek but very few truly find, so for those nostalgic and romantic readers, this volume is sure to connect. I personally found the verses which connected to the overall concept of nature and beauty the most sincere and well formed. Burns has a talent for selecting highly emotive words and his pacing and formatting are excellent in order to space those ideas and emotions out properly. Overall, the romantic in many people will be delighted by the work of Gary W. Burns, and I’d definitely recommend To You With Love: Selected Poems as a highly quotable volume.

Tracy Young

To You With Love: Selected Poems is a collection of poems about love, passion, and companionship. Gary W. Burns is a man who understands love in all its glory and revels in the joy and the despair it can bring. He manages to take the very essence of true love and convey its magic with his words. This book is food for the soul and can make you cry and smile at the same time. Poetry is an art form that comes from the heart and, in this collection, Gary has not only written from the heart but has written about the heart and how it affects our everyday lives.

Gary W. Burns has taken his inspiration from nature and described our innermost feelings with references to the seasons, wildlife and other natural phenomena. To You With Love: Selected Poems has avoided sentimentality and replaced it with stunning descriptions of blazing sunsets and translucent rain. I loved the poem that described a relationship as a lamp and a lamplighter, each depending on the other to bring light into the world. He shares with the reader how it feels to truly love someone and the joy that can be achieved with simple acts of love. He also describes what it is like to lose a love and the pain this creates. To You With Love: Selected Poems is a testament to human emotions and the wonders of nature. It made me glow with joy and I believe that it can do the same for anyone who reads it and welcomes love into their heart.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

Love is a very complex emotion to describe. There are many kinds of love and many ways to express each kind. Love in its multi-dimensional form is a painting, incomplete, complex and, at the same time, vague and incomprehensible. Love is also a song, its sweet tone hypnotic and compelling and all consuming. Love is also poetry – words interwoven into a complex tapestry to express what is better felt than described. “The fabric of me,/ You;/ Tapestry.” What better way to portray love, the picturesque beauty of its many forms, than in the simple, yet complex words of poetry.

Poet Gary W. Burns has put together a marvelous small volume of poetry about love. To You With Love: Selected Poems explores the many forms of love and how it affects him as both a person and a poet, an artist of words. This collection is divided into love themes of the poet’s choosing, themes that expand the wide spectrum of love. The first section, Woven, portrays the many metaphorical associations of love in its infancy: “Moving/ As well so quickly;/ We’ll meet/ By design.” And, with infinite possibilities in the realm of the visual arts: “We live/ Intertwined/ Upon/ The canvas/ Life.”

The next section, Ins and Outs, explores the complexities of this elusive emotion: “Windows / Are living canvases.” The third section, Serenity, addresses the many levels of acceptance of love: “Night came on,/ Shy -/ It blushed / Across the sky.” The poet beautifully describes the emotion as if working with paint on canvas. Love is painting in all its sublime beauty. The final section, Amore, allows the power of the emotion to take hold. Quite simply: “O/ The love/ Complete.” A passionate and brilliantly painted canvas of words on a very complex theme.

Jamie Michele

To You With Love: Selected Poems by Gary William Burns is a book of the author's own poetry, written in contemporary free verse and compiled as a moving tribute to the most intimate theme in the world. Often rhythmic and always filled with the soulfulness his readers have come to expect, Burns puts forward his collection of poems and has this time also offered them in four distinct chapters: Woven, Ins and Outs, Serenity, and Amore. The free verse format is unique in how it provides for each page to take shape – literally – as the line construction is as fluid and artfully composed as the individual pieces themselves.

In the first quarter of To You With Love, under the poem titled 'What Greater Gift', Gary William Burns writes, “Perhaps, I shouldn’t speak of love...” Thankfully, just as the lines progress, so to does Burns' possible desertion, as he sets the notion aside and allows for this sonnet of sorts to come to full fruition. For the record, I am convinced that Burns has every authority to speak on the subject and he does so with skilled creativity and a lovely depth of emotion throughout the entire compilation.

Contemporary poetry can be an uncomfortable format for readers who are new to the style, but I would imagine that even for those who struggle to see beyond a classical arrangement, the substance of Burns' words will have the ability to convert the most picky of connoisseurs. I would highly recommend this book to all who appreciate the poetic art form and the particular application of that form to the subject of love.