Monday, January 15, 2007

Cynthia Ruth Lewis: Piss On Your Parade--Poems From A Disillusioned Pessimist

Reviewed by: Christopher Robin

Christopher has met Cynthia, but I do not think she would piss on his parade. Maybe she'd throw him a beer though. As long as it isn't her handbag.

Piss On Your Parade--poems from a disillusioned pessimist.
It's available for a mere $5, from Cynthia Ruth Lewis, P.O. Box 232984, Sacramento, CA 05823-0433

The introduction to this book reads: “Enjoy the contents or die!! Any complaints? Cram ‘em!”

Like Misti Rainwater-Lites, Lewis is not afraid to make anger and sexuality a staple of her poetry with only the rare instance of apology. And where some female poets hollowly court self destruction, Lewis does not.

“The Difference Between A Blowhard and a Diehard: “one positive thing I can say towards drinking: I don’t drive recklessly/commit crimes, or sleep with strange men while under the influence—I do enough of that while sober.” She is not a Courtney Love clone, though she certainly has the attitude. In the title poem she writes: “I don’t usually carry handbags/but I’ve got to conceal the hatchet with something/I’m not purposely out for blood, but should the urge strike, which it usually does, it’s nice to be prepared.”

In ‘Outcast,’ she makes her stance: “I’ve never rushed out to see a “hit” movie/I don’t “do” the mall/I don’t pay attention to or/participate in gossip/I enjoy being on the other side/because if being different/is deemed wrong in this fleeting/fuck of a world, I don’t ever wanna be right.”

These poems are filled with rage and not the least bit melancholy. This is the sort of inspired anger that may make one want to rally for the author. These are poems you can get inside but will have to claw your way out.

In ‘Images,’ one of the few poems in the book that is not pure anger, she writes about her dying dog: “finally pulling you roughly from the car/to pretend I didn’t care, not feeling the sun warm on my back, or your tangle of fur soft in my hands…”

A very good first chapbook.

1 comment:

With Hammer And Tong...The LetterShaper said...

I have so enjoyed my trip through this site; as a poet and an avid reader, I found it both enlightening and enriching...Thank You!

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