on January 15, 2011
In Aimee Nezhukumatathil's latest book, "Lucky Fish," the reader happily sits shotgun as the poet explores every landscape set out in front of her.
Sometimes the poetry can be airy and almost magical -- fables and lush takes on nature. Other times, the poetry is grounded -- anchoring memories with specific and surprising details ("When I was twelve, I lived / on the grounds of mental asylum" she begins one poem; in another about her time spent as her college Mascot, she writes that she worked herself "into a lather of sweat for a field / of angry young men").
And still other times, the poems bubble, glittering with humor, such as a found poem consisting of lines from emails she received from high school students studying her work alongside Walt Whitman's -- "I think I like Walt Whitman / better than you, but don't take offense -- you are very good too!" reads an excerpt.
The book is organized in three sections, and the relationship Nezhukumatathil builds with the reader over the first two sections makes that final section -- Lucky Penny, about the pregnancy and eventual birth of her first child -- so wonderfully intimate & joyful. It is a jolt of hope shot straight into your veins.
Nezhukumatathil is a curious, playful, yet unshakeably focused poet, and "Lucky Fish" is a triumph of a book, very much alive, aware and living in our world. Huzzah!
on June 13, 2011
This young poet, a wife, mother, and educator speaks with an authentic, intelligent, and charming voice. Her multi-cultural background enriches her world view.
From the most everyday experiences to reflections onher world travel, Aimee "Nez" is worth reading again and again.