3 out of 4 stars
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Poartry by Doug Kiburz is a fun volume of cowboy-style poetry aimed at giving the reader a lighter view of life in general and the wild west in particular. As told from the perspective of a rancher, these poems also reflect the opinions of a sculptor and surgeon. The western theme of the poetry is prevalent, however, and tends toward humorous lines of thought.
I loved how the subtitle describes this book as a collision of poetry and art rather than a collection of poetry and art. Little nuggets of humor like that bring a smile to every reader and make the journey through this book enjoyable. Each page reveals a new and pleasing discovery of observations and insights.
Each chapter presents poems written about a different topic. From holidays, history, and ranching, to love and romance, each one is a wonderful collection of inspiration and humor dealing with the new subject for that particular chapter.
My favorite poem in this work was about America’s First Responders and a very fitting tribute to those who make sacrifices for us each and every day. I loved the style of narrative that flowed through this author’s poetry. The sense of comedy is there in the rhythm of the stanzas, but the depth of the emotion is also carried through in a balanced way that is pleasing overall.
The photos and artwork that illustrate each poem add to the hilarity or mood of each work and accent the feel of the book overall. I liked how each illustration complimented its particular theme. Some of the drawings were cute and comical, while some of the photos added the element of fine art.
If I were to try to find something negative about this book, it would not be easy. However, I did notice that some of the poetry in some of the sections seemed a bit random in its placement with the topics. That said, that aspect did not affect my enjoyment of the book as I progressed through it.
Character development in a book of poetry covering so many different subjects might be difficult for readers to pin down. Still, again, the narrative leaves the reader with a sense that the author’s character comes through distinctly.
I offer a word of caution for sensitive readers. There is some off-color humor in some of the poems in this volume, although nothing severe or too vulgar. Due to that aspect, I recommend this book to adults who enjoy poetry that makes good points and is light and entertaining. The editing was fair in this book. I found errors that ranged from spelling to incorrect hyphenation and an instance of a stanza begun but not finished. For these reasons, I am rating this work with 3 out of 4 stars. It will appeal most to fans of humorous poetry with a western theme.
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