Saturday, January 9, 2016

Book Review: MYSTIC VERSES (Revised second edition)

MYSTIC VERSES
Poems by M Teresa Clayton
Revised second edition

The first verse published in this collection, entitled Alive, sets the tone for the others to follow by establishing the idea that salvation of the soul begins on earth rather than false promises of heaven from self-professed, self-serving “prophets” (we all know there are plenty of them). The second thing that struck me was its blend of mysticism and humanism, a motif running concurrently through this tome. You receive impressions of nature’s dual role as benign and merciless, as if it is transformed into a living, breathing entity. You receive images of those who were killed in the name of religion, tainting snow with innocent blood and returning from beyond to seek vengeance. M Teresa Clayton’s verse is incisive and grows progressively darker, filling your mind with images of lost souls and forgotten songs from ages past; she somewhat reminds me of Tom Warrior’s (Celtic Frost) lyrics, only the landscapes she illustrates are much vaster. She credits her writings as being inspired by what she refers to as “intradminensional beings” that communicate with her while presenting her with information about us as individuals and us as a species. She calls these beings “the Otheres” and dedicates her book exclusively to them. In Mystic Verses we’re reminded that many landscapes exist in the imagination, regardless how much we close our eyes to them. I would say those inner landscapes, for all their darkness, are far preferable to the reality the general public is expected to accept. We are invited into the endless, boundless realm of Clayton’s “forgotten knowing”, to explore it freely and without reservation, so we might recognize something within and come away a little more enlightened than we were beforehand. With all the verses gathered for your consumption, you have too many opportunities for exploration to not be drawn in. Complementing them are photos taken by Debbie Dixon of Dragon Wolf Productions presenting some visuals to accompany her writing. -Dave Wolff

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