Dark Wild Realm
Michael Collier
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Buy *Dark Wild Realm: Poems* by Michael Collier online

Dark Wild Realm: Poems
Michael Collier
80 pages
November 2007
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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Collier displays a mastery of images, the brilliant feathers of winged creatures, the chirping song of birds at daybreak, their elegance and majesty in flight, the first poem striking a note that repeats throughout the collection:

“One had feathers like a brood-streaked koi,
another a tail of color-coded wires.
One was a blackbird stretching orchid wings.
Another a flicker with a wounded head.”
              (Birds Appearing in a Dream)
Of course, along with life and joy comes the inevitability of death, a priest oblivious to the very personal nature of grief:
“And now he is reassuring us
that our friend is in
a better place, that God,
too soon, has called him home,
a mystery faith endures.

…he barely stays to finish the job.”
                (The Watch)
Language is powerful, defining a life, hinting at the mystery, the history, the unknown, the feared, the unexpected:
“‘It’s only a story,
life doesn’t happen this way.’
But how else did the hair on my arms rise the first

And last time the story was read? And what woke
My sister from her dream where she stood
In a forest, burning, among an alphabet of flames?”
                (Night Story)
Stepping through the intimacies of a profound moment, the splendid beauty of birds and the lessons of Greek tragedy, Collier explores the small and the magnificent in equal measure, reaching beyond boundaries to challenge the reader, to tease the mind into ambitious leaps, while keeping the feet firmly planted on the ground.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. © Luan Gaines, 2007

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