Title: Nature Speaks- Art & Poetry for the Earth
Author: Deborah Kennedy
Publisher: White Cloud Press
Source: Review Copy from Author
‘Nature Speaks’ is a compilation of poems & artwork, on ecological themes. There are 32 poems in the collection, with a piece of art featured alongside each poem, followed by a short essay. Published in later part of 2016, the book has been recognized with Nautilus Book Award (Silver) & Eric Hoffer Award.
About the Author
Deborah Kennedy’s writing explores themes related to the natural world and ecology. Primarily working as an artist, Kennedy’s art work has been featured in California & Europe in numerous shows focusing on social & ecological themes. Kennedy teaches college classes in art & art history.
This book is an expression of the author’s feelings for Nature. The book is divided into 4 parts. While in the 1st part, she celebrates Nature & its complexities, in the 2nd part she laments its degradation. She goes on to highlight, in the 3rd part, how toxic chemicals have infused into our lives. In the last part, she attempts to heal this planet. And all this, she expresses with her poetry & artwork. The short essays, of course, provide a better understanding of the theme of the poems and shed light on the accompanying illustration.
The poems that are compiled in this book are compelling. At one time, they compel one to admire the nature, while at other time, they compel one to ponder the problems of nature. The poetry covers a wide range of subjects including almost all the elements of nature.
Her poems talk about Science, History, Geography, Mythology, Reality, Cancer, and Biodiversity. She writes about Animals & Birds- extinct as well as endangered. They do make us worry about what we have done to this planet and what may happen to this ailing planet of ours.
The artwork forms the best part of the book. It fills one with esteem. The artwork further heightens the effect produced by the poems. In the Introduction, the author tells us about these illustrations and the techniques & colors used in the illustrations. She has made use of earth- toned inks & sepia inks, and techniques that were used by the Dadaists & the Surrealists. Those having knowledge in the field of Art, might be able to appreciate the work in a better way.
It is a sheer delight in simply looking at the artwork. Here I feature some pieces of the art:
There is no doubt that, the author has succeeded in conveying to the readers what she wanted to. To all those, who say that the problems of nature & the related figures are being overstated, I would say go & read this book. This book might succeed in evoking those emotions, which the numbers & facts failed to. It is so because poetry appeals to the heart.
Though the poems are compelling, one might not like certain poems much, if read only as a poem. Some poems appear like mere statements arranged in different lines. Some other poems are almost incomprehensible, without the accompanying short essay. Sometimes, I had to read the essay first to get a better understanding.
The author has worked on this book for 10 years. And her hard work is reflected clearly in the book. It is, indeed, a well researched book. In this age, we’ve many many authors writing Romance, Thrillers, Historical Fiction,etc, but only a few are writing on this topic. The author has to be commended for this.
I would recommend this book to every soul, who feels something in their heart, whenever they look at Nature. This book is meant to be cherished by the lovers of nature.
My Rating: **** (4/5)
What do you think about this book? Do you think we need more such books? Have you read any book on the same theme? Do share your thoughts. Thanks.
*I was given a copy of the book by the author, in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed are entirely personal & unbiased.*