Book Review – a clear day in october

A little about Jim first:

Jim Lewis is an internationally-published poet described by his friends as a Renaissance Man, multi-talented, remarkable, or sometimes as “odd, but in a good way.” By profession, he is a certified Family Nurse Practitioner, with a parallel career in technology. By hobby, he is a musician, writer, photographer, and kayaker.

Jim s interest in writing goes back to his early youth, but he only started to send out his poetry to editors and publishers when he reached his sixties. To his surprise and delight, several pieces were quickly accepted for publication, and so for the first time he envisioned a collection of his favorite poems.

These hand-picked favorites have been paired with his own photography to share with you as a clear day in october.

To find out more about Jim, please visit his website.

My Review:

Well done, Jim! This book is fantastic!

Honestly, I’m not a fan of poetry. Then I met a friend at her job for lunch and she had a copy of a clear day in october. She thought I might like the pictures as I love photography, so I borrowed it. What an unexpected delight I found in the words. I fell in love with the poetry, and felt compelled to leave a review.

Jim Lewis has opened my eyes to the world of poetry with a clear Day in october. I loved this book. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. Not only are the pictures worth 5 stars, the poems are exquisite and deserve the highest rating I can give as well.

I loved the poem, Empty. The haunting words struck a cord in my heart and the photograph with it brings the feelings home. It haunts me still. Quietly, for Mother Theresa was a beautiful tribute, and First Lie will speak to everyone.

Jim brought out all of my emotions with his lovely words, and the pictures make me want to do some traveling. He’s a fantastic photographer, and the book is worth having on your coffee table just for them.

I highly recommend a clear day in october for anyone who enjoys poetry, photography, and a warm feeling inside.

First poem, up for discussion:

salieri’s lament

heaven plays its humor out in men like me
plants in us desire to sing praises
the full fruit of our talent, sweet—
but common and pale
beside the flower of genius
such an ungodly prank
to fill me with yearning
then give another the voice of my songs
music i have dreamed and forgotten at waking
lines and phrases of eternal echoes
revealed in details i can’t write
that dissolve to simple melodies
and little pleasantries
for the popular court
what loving creator would place me here
driven to produce, then reduced
to grudging applause of the upstart genius
who thanks me for a trifle composed in his honor
then having played it once
criticizes and improves impromptu
infuriatingly right
with every remake and remark
making me less a heavenly handiwork
more a celestial satire
who will remember i was here
when no one notices the shadows
that make the light more bright?

Discussion:

I like this poem. I’m not a poetry expert, but I think it’s well written and it captured my interest. It put a little catch in my throat. Getting used to Jim’s pet peeve of not capitalizing words took me a hot moment, but I’m a critiquer/editor so that’s why. It did not take away from my experience.

Jim also took all the photos for the book, and he is a wonderful photographer.

What do you guys think?

Please post a comment for discussion.

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8 responses to “Book Review – a clear day in october

  1. Shelly Blankman

    A Clear Day in October is a wonderful reminder during turbulent times that there is beauty in the world, and the beauty comes in the form of Jim Lewis’s exquisite photos and poetry. His book is a gift for the senses. Yes there is sadness, but always purpose and the way in which Mr. Lewis interweaves images of human experience and nature is an unforgettable journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review! Thanks so much for sharing.

    Like

  3. If you only look at the gorgeous photos, you’ll be well rewarded having gotten your copy of A Clear Day in October. If you read the poems, you’ll be even more impressed– a photographer/poet, Jim Lewis is both. And what an eye he has–and ear. Open anywhere in the book and you’ll be moved. I just opened to “Unstrung.” Both the poem and the accompanying photo float in air like music.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Another great review! Thanks for sharing!

    Like

  5. I like the last lines… who will remember i was here
    when no one notices the shadows
    that make the light more bright? You have to think about it, wrap your head around it. Also, the use of punctuation and capitalization which to me reveal how ‘small’ he feels in this piece. By not capitalizing I, he is minimizing himself, which goes into the last line.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on Ra Winter Writer and commented:
    Check out Sherry Terry’s blog as she discusses a poetry piece by JIM FIRST. Read the poem, and join in with your thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and for reblogging!

    Like

  8. Pingback: a clear day in october – The Naked Reviwers

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