25 November, 2008

Book Review of:

Nature: an anthology of poems by Grass Roots Open Writers 2008

24pp (A5 booklet)

This is the first anthology from a very recently formed group, and should be the inspiration for all Fed-type writing groups! It has a beautifully designed front cover, and the simple formula of a poem per page with its own decorative border makes it an attractive book to handle and peruse.

The book opens with a clear explanation of what GROW is all about:

Grass Roots Open Writers is a community writing and publishing group, that particularly welcomes people who need to develop confidence in expressing themselves.”

And Ashley Jordan’s poem, “Grass Roots”, explains in a lovely way the reason for their name:

Grass Roots,

Reaching down

Into nourishment

Finding their place

Securing their space

Upon the earth”

The theme of the anthology, “Nature” is, of course, a very wide one, and there is a good range of responses, and the last poem is a two-writer collaboration! One of my personal favourites, though, was by Stephen Taylor, a wonderfully lyrical and assured poem, I thought:

As I pass into autumn,

With its shades,

Like the moonlight

The coldness of the heart, like the winter

I long for another summer,

Like a lover waits for an embrace

To feel the warmth

Of its refreshing breath

I wait in hope, saying

I don’t want to be alone tonight”

The prevailing mood of this collection is celebratory and optimistic, Spring-like in its hope. GROW sounds like a very supportive and friendly group, and I wish it long-lasting success so I can look forward to reading many more anthologies!

By Lynne Clayton


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