Once, I walked into a bookstore in search of a Poetry Book. It was only late last year. I had heard so many people rant and talk and obsess over how they had stacks of Poetry Books on their shelves, but I had none to boast of. In my most private moments, I reckoned I would call myself some-kind-of-poet, so it made no sense that I had no poetry book, no? So, I went to that bookstore. I had no recommendations or suggestions in mind, so I let the luv’ly book-keeper talk me into buying this very colourful compilation. I thought it to be my best collection yet, and flaunted it with pride, to as many literary friends as I had at the time, and I could not wait to dig right in! You know! First ten pages down, and I had my chin in my palms. Forlorn. By golly, I could not understand a thing! There and then, I became ever so wary of Poetry books. Until early last week when A.L.D. Chalom revived my interest in carving out a shelf of poetry books again, with her debut “ONE”.
Chalom talks about love, and pain, and life in very many simple ways, that resonate with me. Reading “I’d share my fire if you had a door”, reminded me of what I felt while writing License to Love. “Why don’t you burn with me” reminded me of those days when I would hurt so bad about something and wish someone would tell me it was okay to feel that way, because in fact, maybe it was hurting them too…
Can something that radiates
So. Much. Damn. Pain.
Through your entire body
Not burn the rest of the world with you?”
A. L. D. Chalom in ONE
Chalom’s book evoked wonderment and appreciation in me; I felt that it must have taken some feat to make something very brief, simple, yet exquisite in impact. I had been quite busy at the time I got to read the book, having a lot of deadlines to catch up to, but once I delved into it—from the very first piece of poetry: “One you. One sun. One chance, or two?”, I knew I had to go through it completely before putting it down. And I did, I read the book one time, yo; because she made it easy to do so. I think that in all, the beauty of Chalom’s book lies in its simplicity; in its you-do-not-have-to-get-a-dictionary-i-am-just-an-easy-awesome-read quality. Now, really, if this book had been out earlier, say sometime in December last year, I would wish that that book-keeper had handed me this piece of magic instead.
Here’s me thanking A.L.D. Chalom for lending her thoughts to me and the rest of the world, in this simple exquisite pack of delight, and everywhere else! Do keep writing! And in the spirit of penmanship, I hope we all get better at doing this thing that we so love! Telling our stories the way we know how to.
You can check out A. L. D. Chalom on Instagram– @printpoetics, and you can grab a copy of her book “ONE” on Amazon. It is highly recommended in fact!
Lest I forget, happy Marvellous May family!
© The Short Black Girl, 2016.