Saturday, August 25, 2018

Sorry So Sorry - An Arresting Collection of Poems

 I've been reading a lot of poetry lately (and writing it, too), and Sorry So Sorry, The Complete Collection, by Angie Outis, is a beautiful discovery, although a thread of sadness runs through all the poems. ("The Complete Collection" because parts of the book have been previously published as separate booklets. Now they are all together, tracing the course of the author's dissolving marriage.) Angie Outis is a pseudonym, for purposes of privacy, since these poems were written during the author's divorce.
             This lovely collection of 78 poems actually unfolds like a novella in verse. Each poem is connected to the one before and the one after, like pearls on a string. The language is elegant, yet simple; spare, but full to bursting with restrained emotion as the protagonist gradually awakens to the reality of her life. 
            The book opens on her 30thbirthday, but her awakening actually began a year earlier when an outside incident with her husband revealed a violent streak. She has always been a dutiful wife and mother, following the precepts of her church: Women are obedient. They don’t question. A husband’s love is enough to cover any unease in the home life. He is the one who knows best. In her case, he’s also a leader in his church and community. 
            But is he as loving as she always thought? After visitors come to the house (no spoilers here) she also has to wonder if she even knows who he is. The poems throb with pain as they trace the insidious deterioration of the relationship. He is not loving. He is not kind. He’s a stranger. She’s afraid of him and makes plans to leave. Her inner strength grows—and grow it must, because friends, parents, and the church are against the choice she makes. (The title, Sorry So Sorry, highlights the guilt she feels for disrupting everyone’s life to find her own.)
            I especially appreciate how the author avoids pitfalls of melodrama or cliché. The wife’s journey progresses like an opening flower, showing how a once shrinking life can finally bloom.

You can learn more about the author and her other works on her Amazon author page HERE:

Thanks for stopping by.  Do you like to read poetry? If so, what kind? Free verse? Rhyme? And who is your favorite poet? Do you write poetry? If so, what kind? For adults? For children? 


23 comments:

Elephant's Child said...

I do read poetry.
And very occasionally write it (badly).
Sadly the tale she tells is familiar to too many of us.
Favourite poet? Changes with the wind, the season, the mood. Which is part of the genres charm for me.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, there, EC. I agree that her tale is a familiar one, which is why I especially appreciated her not veering toward the sensational or worn out imagery. My favorite poets change, too. I'm always discovering new poets i didn't know about. (My background in poetry has been kinda hit-and-miss.) Have a great day.

Kenda Turner said...

This does sound like a sad read and yet one that shows how poetry helped the poet through such a difficult time. Thanks for the review. I am growing to appreciate poetry more and more, and read a variety of types. My choice right now for writing is haiku--little snippets of the awareness of a moment :-) I've tried my hand at longer poetry forms but right now this is where I'm having the most fun!

Tanya Reimer said...

Oh wow. Love this post. Not very often we get a review about poetry books! You sold me. Sounds incredible. Thanks for sharing.

Rosi said...

This sounds like an interesting collection. I will have to check it out. I read poetry but not as much as I should. I love everything by Mary Oliver, and I recently discovered Philip Levine. His book Night Shift is extraordinary.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Rosi, thanks for stopping by. I've ordered Mary Oliver's book on poetry. I know you quote her a lot, and a poet I met this Saturday at a memorial service recommended the book. I'm so looking forward to reading it.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Tanya, I'm glad I got you interested in the book. I've scribbled poetry off an on all my life, but lately I'm really getting into it, and I appreciated how one could tell a whole story through a collection of short poems. Really well written, too.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Kenda, I know you are into haiku. How is your collection coming? Are you going to turn it into a chapbook? You got me into the mood of a collection during the April poetry challenge. Can't thank you enough.

Kenda Turner said...

Hi back to you, Elizabeth, to say I'm so glad to have played a (small) part in your poetry journey. And the April challenge was a good one for me, too--contest sponsor Local Gems named my submission a finalist in their 2018 contest and, with that, upcoming chapbook publication of the collection! Super stoked. Stay tuned for info' on publication date :-)

Kate Larkindale said...

Sounds like a good collection. I must see if I can find it.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Oh, Kenda, that is just so great! I'm so glad for you. Let me know when it comes out. I'll buy a copy and review it.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Kate, it's on Amazon. I think I gave the link. It's really a nice collection. I read it twice, since it moves like a story in fragments. I'll probably read it a few times.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Thank you for sharing. I love poetry, but seldom read it. Maybe I ought to start reading more.

Romance Reader said...

I like your review of this poetry book. Thank you.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Beverly, I think reading poetry benefit's an author's writing. It taps into imagery and feelings in a way that often prose doesn't and helps you express things in a fresh way.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

I'm glad you liked the review, Romance Writer. Thanks for stopping by.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

That was Romance Reader. Sorry for the mistake.

Nas said...

Sounds like a great collection of poetries!

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

It is, Nas. It's a collection of individual poems, but one leads to another, so the poems really do tell the story of the poet's marriage.

DMS said...

This sounds very powerful. I find it interesting that the poems together tell the story of this woman's marriage and divorce. Thanks for sharing.
~Jess

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, DMS, thanks for stopping by. Yes, I thought it was very effectively done. It's a slender little volume, which is why it makes me think of a novella in verse, rather than a novel inverse. But it does unfold as story as well as separate poems.

Sandra Cox said...

How wonderful.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hi, Sandra, it really is a wonderful collection.