Known for dealing with the complexities of love beneath a childlike facade, the poetry collection written by Lang Leav is anything but. Despite the claim that beneath the writing style, the poems are complex, most seem to lack depth.
With a few exceptions, the poems seem to be devoid of structure and suitable metaphors. Nonetheless, the book has received a wide audience owing to its tone and simplicity; with people praising it as a collection of poems easy to understand.
An international best-selling author, Lang Leav, has published two other collections of poems, ‘Lullabies’ and ‘Memories’ in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Her first book, ‘Love & Misadventure’ is divided into three parts – ‘Misadventure’, ‘Circus of Sorrows’ and ‘Love’ – which begin with an illustration.
The illustrations stand apart from the poems and seem to be alluding to the poems as well as other works of art. Illustration two is one such example, showing a girl falling, with a key around her neck.
The allusion seems to be that of ‘Alice in Wonderland’. It could or could not have been intentional, but stands to show the author’s knowledge of the famous children classic. Since her poems are made to seem childlike, it is a high possibility that her intentions are aligned with those of Lewis Carroll.
Most poems in the book are in the form of lyric poetry, expressing strong thoughts and feelings; a form common to contemporary poems. A few poems seem to have a modernist approach, with contrasting images merged together. For instance, the imagery of loving someone is contrasted with an image of ‘doing dishes’. Some poems. however, miss the modernist approach and leave dental hygiene to the mercy of love.
A few lines from the poem, ‘His Cause and Effect’ are,
‘He makes me blush!
He makes me want
to brush and floss.’
This imagery doesn’t seem to go with the theme of ‘Misadventure’, the first part of the book that it has been taken from. The structure doesn’t follow a set pattern and nor does it seem to belong to any particular genre.
This, unfortunately, can be said about most poems in the book.
The theme which is divided into three parts is less misadventure, sorrow, and love, but more on the borderline of the clique first crush which develops into unrequited affection on one person’s part only to graduate into a sad dismissal.
The idea behind the book seems to be well put together, but the poems lack the same intensity. They don’t seem to be well thought of rather written down at will, which isn’t wrong, but, in my opinion, a good collection of poems requires more thought.
The structure of most poems is flawed, ranging from a few lines to a few uneven stanzas. The punctuation doesn’t work, as the poems are scattered with unwanted pauses that the audience could do without. For example, the first stanza of the poem ‘Just Friends’ is,
‘I know that I don’t own you,and perhaps I never will,
and perhaps I never will,so my anger when you’re with her,
so my anger when you’re with her,I have no right to feel.’
Betwixt the poems lie a few extracts, stories, thoughts perhaps which seem to hold value. One of the best extracts was a story about a music box. The extracts are well written and express the complexity so advertised. They are short, simple, but packed with depth.
It isn’t the best collection of poems I have read, it isn’t even close to good, but opinions and poetry are usually subjective.
The poems are easy to understand, but it is my belief that even if poetry flows easily, it shouldn’t give away its meaning all that easily. A reader should unravel its depth with every line.
Since the book has a wide readership already, I would say the book is for people who have reached the age where they can no longer stand ‘Mills & Boons’. The poems seem to be right out of a teenager’s diary. So, I’d say love-struck teens might want to use the post poems service to send messages to their special someone.
It is, however, not for people looking to read something substantial, something that stays with you even after the pages of the book have been long closed. The following tweet shows my very first thoughts on this collection.
— Mansi Laus Deo (@mansilausdeo) January 17, 2016