Review: Magic Realized

magic realized

Magic Realized And Other Poems on the Human Spirit By Louis Alan Swartz. Illustrated by Diane Woods

My Review:

3 out of 5 stars

Swartz writes poems that aren’t too difficult to understand and his writings are typically uplifting– celebrating the wonders of life and the intricacies of the human spirit. Magic Realized has illustrations throughout the book that add aesthetic beauty to the poems.

Swartz does the reader a disservice by providing definitions of certain words after every poem. The definitions are distracting and unnecessary. He reasons that words have different meanings depending on the context they are used and therefore feels the need to clarify definitions for certain words. Shouldn’t a reader be able to deduce the definition of a word based on the context of the writing where the word is placed? Swartz doesn’t think so, and therefore must think very little of the intelligence of his audience (which I assume is an adult audience, since these are certainly not children’s poems). Furthermore, when I come across a word that I don’t understand, I typically reach for a dictionary in my library, or the dictionary app on my phone, or I Google the word.

Wouldn’t it be silly if every author followed Swartz’s path and added definitions of words they think might be too “hard” for their reader to understand? What a debacle!

I received Magic Realized for an honest review.

 

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“Your eyes bade me go down the mountain, but my man’s blood ordered me to conquer the mountain, which I did. You have brought out the manliness in me, and now it is in conflict with the joyful peace to which your woman’s blood calls me. You have brought me life, and in many respects bid me deny that aliveness. You shall have me as I am, not as your woman’s blood would wish me. After all, we have to love ourselves as well as each other. And the man I love conquers mountains.” -Dennis King (19 years old)

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