This review was posted on Amazon about my daughter's first published book of poetry, Inspiration From Above by Crystal Stockwell. I have never read anything like it and I am a reviewer!
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating. Absorbing., February 13, 2012
Fresnel Lindor "book addict"
This review is from: Inspiration From Above (Paperback)
I'll be honest here: I was reluctant to pick up Crystal Stockwell's book of poetry and read it, not because of the title or the book cover, but I have read too much poetry over the years. Then I started browsing through the book and looked at the titles of each poem. Some looked familiar territory, others somewhat intriguing with a divine connotation.
Crystal Stockwell is a young poet with a penchant for semantic universality. From her first stroke, she set out to do what she loves the most - plotting words and writing poetry with gusto , all the while sugarcoating them with whatever luxury inspiration might throw at her along the way. The result: a mosaic of poetry frankly human, blunt, brittle at time, but utterly admirable. The simplicity and the beauty of Stockwell's poetic universe can be seen in the poem entitled RAINBOW
I'm colorful // I sit in the sky // ...You can even watch me go away // Even though I disappear.
Sometimes the reality sinks in, like a rude awakening, and the poet's bitterness is palpable; the world is not necessarily heaven, the bitterness grows stronger when the poet feels belittled, outcast, as in THE SILENT VOICE.
I have a silent voice, yet you can hear me loud and clear // I am small and innocent // I am an inconvenience....
I want you to know...//... lf you could see me, you'd love me too.
When the poet clashes with the ugliness of the daily life, her patience runs out. Gone are the smooth talking, and the love story between Stockwell and the world surrounding her. She becomes resentful, and her bitterness takes the dimension of a messiah with connotations that sound biblical, almost prophetic. In THE LAST CALL TO AMERICA, her resentment is such that Stockwell shows little concern for polishing her trade.
America was a godly nation // but now she's fallen away //The God who was once loved is now hated. // America must repent before it's too late. // It's almost midnight and hell will be her fate //The clock is ticking away.
The truth is the poet is showing her deepest sympathy for an unaltered America. There might be a conflict , though, between what she thinks of as her passion to actual society and her loyalty to eternal beauty of nature
Make no mistake here: the duality of Stockwell's feelings towards the world is not confusing; it is well justified. At the core of the poems lies the soul of this poet, the breadth of her imagination. She wants to be heard; she wants to be a part of this humanity with all its imperfection and lust, but also with all its strength and love. Many before Stockwell had taken this path, incomprehensible to some. William Shakespeare did it, and Victor Hugo, author of Les Misérables, had done it as well. Sometimes, her verses grow in staccato, against an emotional background that only Crystal Stockwell could describe.
It wouldn't be surprising to think that the author of these poems is a seasoned writer; it wouldn't be unusual to think that maybe the poet is an experienced one with a track record. But it would be awesomely surprising to know that the poet behind these verses is an paraplegic and wheelchair-bound since the age of 4. A victim of cerebral palsy, writing is no longer a simple ask for her. She has managed to vision the world with naked eyes, keep pictures, draw sketches in her mind and have somebody else write them for her on paper, while they're still fresh, raw , sizzling with inspiration and creativity. Here, the word AWESOME is an understatement!
Stockwell's life story is interesting , essential for understanding the recurrence in her poetry of theme of love, attachment, faith in God, anger and bitterness, and redemption.
Crystal Stockwell may not have yet the full breath of the great American poets and around the world; she may not have yet Tearful is The Dream the visionary strength of a Frederico Garcia Lorca, but the humanity that incessantly bubbles throughout her poems make them a worthwhile reading.
Stockwell's poetry is fascinating, absorbing, and brilliant.