Melt Into Imagination

Posted: September 5, 2009 in Poetry Endorsements
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Emanuel Di Pasquale
Writing Anew
(buy)

The new and selected poems in this “Writing Anew” are children of a man I got to know as a professor first and poet only later. His writing is as much personal revelation as it is worldly insight. Aspects forgiving, adoring, and observant decorate pieces that range from pastorals to odes to narratives concerning life and everything in-between.

Exemplary, concise writing lends to the first section, New Poems, a slap in the face to readers who are too occupied with plot to sit and chew. These selections, which rarely waste words, offer a scene with no place to go but inwards. Much like haiku, Di Pasquale has a talent for recognizing images pregnant with meaning and has a rare talent for sculpting said scenes. Abandon all desire for travel and pull out the magnifying glass of these words to examine exactly where it is that you have been placed. Then, when you’ve finally sat down and looked around, repeat it like a mantra one last time from within to feel it.

Both of the following come from New Poems:

Passaic River
The river oozes
like a beast
drugged and
let to bleed
for some terminal tests.
It hardly flows.
The wind blows
no ripples
on its surface
that shines
like skin
gone bad.
It falls
puke
black froth.

On a more personal note, but still (mostly) image-based:

Last Day of June
Am I in Heaven?
Slim, lazy gods,
deer doe and fawns,
a family of four,
cross the northwest corner
of my house. Clouds release
the sun. Trees let through
a modest breeze. My wine jug
is half full.

A good 3/4 of this book is dog-eared, a testament to the author’s meditations and the stimulations that they offer if only the tiniest bit of effort is put forth by the reader’s imagination. Topics range from love and family to the surrounding world that affects and is affected by us all. Each poem is tightly woven in a very unique voice. And if you get the chance to hear the man read some of his poems (or anyone else’s), grant yourself the pleasure of doing so. Di Pasquale’s manner is much the same as his poetry: intelligent and passionate, a rare combination.

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