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Reviewed by Jose Cornelio for Readers' Favorite
In Waves of You: Love Poems, Michelle G. Stradford pulls readers into a romantic stream and offers a rhythm that keeps the heart pulsating as she leads them from one strong emotion to another, unveiling a love language that is nuanced and an experience that is both uplifting and inspiring. Anyone who has loved deeply will feel their experience finds words in most of the poems. Divided into three different parts — Waves, Currents, Immersed — the poems explore love in its multilayered nature.
The experience of swimming beside one’s love, of holding their hand and bathing in the rays of their sun, filling the emptiness of loss, and surrendering to the charm of their embrace are a few of the images evoked in the first poems. But the experience deepens as the reader moves to the second part of the poems, with gestures that come from instinct, gazes that contain energy, to spiritual elements of love, like finding refuge in the lover’s heart. The poet speaks about the urgency of love and passion, of kisses that lead to the “top peak of Sierra Nevada,” and the deep dive to the Pacific floor that fills her with wonderment.
The metaphorical style of writing is one of Michelle G. Stradford’s gifts and she uses it with strong imagery to transport readers through each layer of her experience of love. Even when she speaks of intimacy, it feels like diving into the ocean and being inundated with all that is lovable. Waves of You: Love Poems is a collection of poems that celebrate the subject of the poet’s love in an uplifting lyrical style, capturing thoughts and emotions that are timeless and universal. The short poems are loaded with symbolism, imagery of nature, and simile, and the reader appreciates the different ways love is perceived, received, and given. It is a gorgeous offering that should be wrapped in a gift for the one who shares your heart.