- I was asked by the author to give an honest review in exchange for a free copy.
Rating: ★★★ (3 stars)
Title: Here Comes The Sun
Poet: Katie Lewington
Where to buy: Here Comes The Sun
Summary: “Experience the thrill of summer, and travel with me through Europe, without needing to move from your seat, standing in airport baggage queues, cobbled streets, sandy beaches, and tourist shops.” (Source: Goodreads)
Content Warnings: anxiety, sex, use of f*ck and variations of it, removal of a scab, blood, injury, alcohol.
What I liked…
I don’t normally read travel-related literature due to the fact that I am not much of a traveller. This collection surpassed my expectations. Katie Lewington’s writing style takes a while to absorb. When I began to read the collection, I was underwhelmed; but after several readings, I began to understand the depth and felt myself identifying with the words.
i have been thinking about home
a locker room, really
for our belongings
– Locker, p.8
This was the first poem that struck me. Lewington’s poem, Locker, describes home as a place that we dump our stuff in. What’s more is the speaker describes home as a locker room, not just a locker, so this creates the idea that each locker holds different things – like rooms in a house. If you think about it, a home is really just a massive room with walls and doors. Weird, right? Further on in the poem, the speaker informs the reader that they “have begun to construct homes” from other things, such as “places and people”. The speaker sadly doesn’t elaborate beyond that, leaving the poem unresolved in a sense. Perhaps, this is to get the reader thinking about their own definition of home.
After further readings, I realised that Lewington’s poetry collection discusses more than just being on holiday, but existing in different places:
who knew living
could be so
one clean sweep
as if we never existed
– As if We Were Never There, p.10
The speaker questions why we collect things; is it to remind us that we exist? Also, I think this poem could be applied to life, how we collect experiences and knowledge. It is quite terrifying if you think about it, but in a way, I believe we will always leave a mark on the world.
What I disliked…
The synopsis of the book didn’t intrigue me. I would suggest featuring more of the themes within the collection, rather than descriptors of a conventional holiday.
Additionally, I didn’t connect with some of Lewington’s poetry and some lines just confused me. I also didn’t understand the intention of some of the poems, such as Euro, Pending, Wi-Fi, Tongs, and Tub and Spoon, but perhaps they require further reading!
Does the poet have other works?
Katie Lewington has written other poetry collections, such as Put Me Down, I’m Terrible, Just: A Sign of the Times, and a young adult novel, Starve: It’s Love until Somebody Says Otherwise.
If you enjoy reflective poetry based upon travelling, journeys, and metaphors about life, this is for you.
– Melissa Jennings