3 out of 4 stars
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My Ups And Downs by Sam Barder is a reminiscence of the author’s life experiences in the form of short poems. The poems depict some of the joyful experiences the author had, albeit some experiences came with sorrow. This mix of experiences is what makes up this collection of poems.
“Maria Teresa” was one of the poems which showed a glimmer of love the author received from a Spanish girl Maria. Unfortunately, the mutual affection was short-lived. No better way could have been used to describe the solace one could find in something than in “Sammy the Bee”. The poem narrated the life of a bee, Sammy, who sets out to fulfill the needs of the flowers surrounding him but rarely his own needs. Sammy eventually finds a flower where he feels is the best place he should be. Seeing the departure of a lover at the very last minute was the underlying idea behind “The Mosaic”. Some other poems, like “Ellie’s Story”, “Sharing”, and “The Little Cup”, are more generic, without having any specific theme to be ascribed to them.
The book is a collection of nineteen poems. It can be read in one sitting since each poem is about a page long. Although some poems, like “Maria Teresa”, “Sharon’s Jungle”, “The Mosiac”, and “Ellie’s Story”, were written in parts, so they occupied more than a page. Most of the poems are about love and expressions of affection towards something or someone. I guess these should be categorized as the author’s best moments. These are what he attributes as his ups.
I am not always a fan of poems, but I’ve been lucky to pick ones that end up impressing me. Reading one’s account of their ups and downs is moving because you tend to relate to some of their narrations. Some days things go as planned, while the others go awry. I enjoyed Sam’s choice of words in expressing the emotional thrills of the poems.
There were only a few things that I do not like about this collection. Firstly, my expectations of the content of the book weren’t met. Family, career, friendship and health were among the things that I was expecting from the book. But to my surprise, it was mostly about the author expressing his affections. I have nothing against love, just that I expected more from the book. Secondly, there’s this bit of inconsistency in the book formatting. Each poem was meant to be started on a different page, but it isn’t so here. Some poems started on the same page where the previous one ended.
I would rate My Ups And Downs 3 out of 4 stars. I deducted a star because of the points highlighted in the previous paragraph. Other than that, it would have deserved a perfect rating. I didn’t find any errors in the book. I can say the book is impeccably edited. I would recommend this piece to readers who enjoy reading poems centered on love and life.
My Ups And Downs
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