Words Never Spoken: A Book of Spoken Word by Cheryl Denise Bannerman

Words Never Spoken: A Book of Spoken Word by Cheryl Denise Bannerman 

4 Stars

This poetry book follows a narrative format highlighting common issues in the black community. Typical themes of infidelity, drug abuse, lust and religion dictate the poems that lead a fictitious story. The language, idioms and scenery cater for an audience well versed in this environment. However, due to the universal nature of the themes it can appeal to all.

The poems, in general, follow a 3 line stanza format with each line being short with a coupled end rhyme. This makes the pacing fast with a rhythmic tone. On occasions, the rhyming is dropped to slow the pace. There is a prose like nature to some of the work as the material takes on a diary approach in moving the story along.

At the end of each chapter of poems are periods of reflections asking readers to write down answers to questions raised by the chapter themes. They are interesting questions, but whether you complete them is dependent on how relevant it is to your life and if you feel suitably inspired.

The first few chapters deal with the search for a Mr Right (Mr Wonderful the name given in this case). Once found the consequences of his actions play out the rest of the book.

The author’s strengths come to hold when expressing passion for Mr Wonderful with a sense of play and rhythm that flows effortlessly. The sexual play when comparing drink to a lady again delights in its mischief.

The main issues come as the book seems to end abruptly and not with a proper sense of closure. The more preachy and religious elements can wane at times. However, these types of poems are kept to a minimum.

Overall an impressive collection with strengths that the author can further explore for future work.

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